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a country study 


a country study 

Federal Research Division 
Library of Congress 
Edited by 
Glenn E. Curtis 
Research Completed 
December 1990 


On the cover: Muslim minaret, Skopje 

Third Edition, First Printing, 1992. 

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data 

Yugoslavia : a country study / Federal Research Division, Library of 
Congress ; edited by Glenn E. Curtis. — 3rd ed. 

p. cm. — (Area handbook series, ISSN 1057-5294) 
(DA pam ; 550-99) 

"Supersedes the 1982 edition of Yugoslavia: a country study, 
edited by Richard F. Nyrop." — T.p. verso. 
"Research completed December 1990." 
Includes bibliographical references (pp. 303-319) and index. 
ISBN 0-8444-0735-6 

1. Yugoslavia. I. Curtis, Glenn E. (Glenn Eldon), 1946- 
II. Library of Congress. Federal Research Division. III. Area 
handbook for Yugoslavia. IV. Series. V. Series : DA pam ; 

DR1214.Y83 1992 
949.7— dc20 


Headquarters, Department of the Army 

DA Pam 550-99 

For »aJc by the Superintendent o' Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office 
Waihington, D C. 20402 


This volume is one in a continuing series of books prepared by 
the Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress under 
the Country Studies — Area Handbook Program sponsored by the 
Department of the Army. The last page of this book lists the other 
published studies. 

Most books in the series deal with a particular foreign country, 
describing and analyzing its political, economic, social, and national 
security systems and institutions, and examining the interrelation- 
ships of those systems and the ways they are shaped by cultural 
factors. Each study is written by a multidisciplinary team of social 
scientists. The authors seek to provide a basic understanding of 
the observed society, striving for a dynamic rather than a static 
portrayal. Particular attention is devoted to the people who make 
up the society, their origins, dominant beliefs and values, their com- 
mon interests and the issues on which they are divided, the nature 
and extent of their involvement with national institutions, and their 
attitudes toward each other and toward their social system and 
political order. 

The books represent the analysis of the authors and should not 
be construed as an expression of an official United States govern- 
ment position, policy, or decision. The authors have sought to 
adhere to accepted standards of scholarly objectivity. Corrections, 
additions, and suggestions for changes from readers will be wel- 
comed for use in future editions. 

Louis R. Mortimer 

Federal Research Division 
Library of Congress 
Washington, D.C. 20540 



The authors are indebted to numerous individuals and organi- 
zations who gave their time, research materials, advice, and ex- 
pertise on Yugoslav affairs to provide data, perspective, and material 
support for this volume. 

The work of Steven L. Burg and Robert E. Bartos, authors of 
the Government and Politics and National Security chapters, respec- 
tively, of the previous edition of the Yugoslavia area handbook, 
supplied vital foundation material to the new authors of those chap- 
ters. Thanks also go to the Embassy of Yugoslavia and the Yugo- 
slav National Tourist Office (New York) for supplying the editor 
with a large number of photographs from which to choose. The 
expert photography of Charles Sudetic and Sam and Sarah Stulberg 
has added timely and picturesque images of Yugoslavia. And, in the 
final stages of updating current events in Yugoslavia, the firsthand 
insights of Paul Pajic of the Library of Congress were invaluable. 

Thanks also go to Ralph K. Benesch, who oversees the Coun- 
try Studies — Area Handbook Program for the Department of the 
Army. In addition, the authors appreciate the advice and guidance 
of Sandra W. Meditz, Federal Research Division coordinator of the 
handbook series. Special thanks also go to Marilyn L. Majeska, who 
managed editing and production, assisted by Andrea T. Merrill; to 
Kimberly Lord, who designed the book cover; to Carlyn Dawn 
Anderson, who designed the illustrations on the title page of each 
chapter; to David P. Cabitto, who provided graphics support and, 
together with Harriett R. Blood and the firm of Greenhorne and 
O'Mara, prepared maps; and to Tim Merrill, who compiled geo- 
graphic data. The following individuals are gratefully acknowledged 
as well: Sharon Costello, who edited the chapters, and Barbara Edg- 
erton and Izella Watson, who did the word processing. Cissie Coy 
performed the final prepublication editorial review; Joan C. Cook 
compiled the index; and Linda Peterson of the Printing and Process- 
ing Section, Library of Congress, prepared the camera-ready cop\ , 
under the supervision of Peggy Pixley. 



Foreword iii 

Acknowledgments v 

Preface xiii 

Country Profile XV 

Introduction xxiii 

Chapter 1. Historical Setting 1 

Charles Sudetic 




The Slovenes 7 

The Croats and Their Territories JO 

The Serbs and Serbia, Vojvodina, and Montenegro . . 16 

Bosnia and Hercegovina 22 

Macedonia 25 



The Balkan Wars and World War I 27 

Formation of the South Slav State 28 

The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 29 

Political Life in the 1920s 31 

Economic Life and Foreign Policy in the 1920s 32 

The Royal Dictatorship 33 

The Regency 35 

The Sporazum, Tripartite Pact, and Outbreak 

of World War II 36 


Partition and Terror 37 

The Resistance Movement 39 


Communist Takeover and Consolidation 42 

The Yugoslav-Soviet Rift 45 

Introduction of Socialist Self-Management 47 

Nonalignment and Yugoslav-Soviet Rapprochement . . 49 

Reforms of the 1960s 50 


Unrest in Croatia and Its Consequences 

in the 1970s 53 

The 1974 Constitution 54 

Chapter 2. The Society and Its Environment 59 

Charles Sudetic 


Topography 63 

Drainage Systems 64 

Climate 64 

Pollution 67 

Population 67 


Ethnographic History 69 

Ethnic Composition 70 

Languages 72 

The Yugoslav Nations 73 


The Peasantry 89 

The Workers 92 

The Political Elite and Intellectuals 94 

The Family 97 


Housing 102 

Urban Problems 104 

Guest Workers 104 


Demography and Distribution 107 

Eastern Orthodoxy 108 

Roman Catholicism 110 

Islam 112 

Other Faiths 113 


History of Yugoslav Education 113 

Primary Schools 114 

Secondary Education 115 

Higher Education 116 


Disease and Mortality 116 

Development of the Health Care System 116 

The Contemporary Health and Welfare Systems .... 117 


Chapter 3. The Economy 121 

Malinda K. Goodrich 


World War II and Recovery 124 

Application of Stalinist Economics 124 

The First Five- Year Plan 125 

Launching Socialist Self-Management 127 

The "Perspective" Five-Year Plan 127 

Overhaul in the 1960s 128 

The Economic Reform of 1965 129 

Adjustments in the 1970s 130 


Socialist Self- Management 131 

Capital Ownership and the Market 132 

Planning and Pricing 134 

Trade Unions 135 

Government Revenue and Spending 136 

Banking 136 


Labor and Unemployment 138 

Industry 139 

Agriculture 144 

Energy and Mineral Resources 146 

Transportation and Telecommunications 150 


Historical Background 152 

Exports and Imports 156 

Trading Partners 157 

Guest Workers and Tourism 160 

Foreign Exchange 162 


Inflation and Foreign Debt 163 

Living Standards 164 

Regional Disparities 164 

THE REFORMS OF 1990 165 

Chapter 4. Government and Politics 169 

Glenn E. Curtis 


Breaking with the Soviet Union 173 

The 1963 Constitution 174 

Post-Rankovic Diversification 175 


Political Innovation and the 1974 Constitution 176 

The Early Post-Tito Years 180 

Reform in the 1980s 180 

The Leadership Crisis 183 


Federal Assembly 184 

Federal Executive Council 185 

State Presidency 187 

Court System 189 

Local Government and the Communes 190 


League of Communists of Yugoslavia 192 

Socialist Alliance of Working People of Yugoslavia ... 197 

Trade Unions 198 

Youth League of Yugoslavia 199 

Veterans' Association 199 


Slovenia 200 

Serbia 202 

Kosovo 204 

Vojvodina 206 

Croatia 206 

Montenegro 208 

Bosnia and Hercegovina 209 

Macedonia 210 


Djilas, Praxis, and Intellectual Repression 211 

Intellectual Opposition Groups 212 

The Media 213 

Censorship 214 


The Government Foreign Policy Mechanism 216 

Nonalignment 216 

The Soviet Union 218 

The United States 218 

European Neighbors 219 

The Middle East and Western Europe 220 


Chapter 5. National Security 225 

Karl Wheeler Soper 


Early Development 228 


World War II 229 

Postwar Development 231 


Threat Perception 233 

Military Doctrine 235 

Strategy and Tactics 236 


Government Organization for Defense 238 

The Military and the Party 241 

Armed Services 243 

Territorial Defense Forces 250 


The Military and Society 253 

Recruitment and Service Obligations 257 

Military Training and Education 259 

Military Life 261 

Ranks, Insignia, and Uniforms 262 


Military Budget 266 

Arms Procurement 267 


Warship Visits 273 

Arms Sales 273 

Military Exchanges 274 


Dissidence 276 

Courts, Detention, and Punishment 278 

Internal Security Forces 280 

Organization for Internal Security 282 

The Military in Domestic Peacekeeping 283 

Appendix. Tables 287 

Bibliography 303 

Glossary 321 

Index 325 

List of Figures 

1 Administrative Divisions of Yugoslavia, 1990 xxii 

2 Military Frontier Province Between the Habsburg 

and Ottoman Empires, ca. 1600-1800 14 

3 Expansion of Serbia, 1804-1913 20 

4 South Slav Territories at Formation of Yugoslav State, 

1918-19 30 


5 Partition of Yugoslavia, 1941 38 

6 Topography and Drainage 66 

7 Ethnic Groups 72 

8 Principal Languages and Religions 74 

9 Gross National Product (GNP) by Sector, 1975 and 

1988 142 

10 Industrial Centers and Natural Resources, 1990 148 

11 Transportation and Pipeline Systems, 1990 154 

12 The Delegate System of Elections, 1990 178 

13 Evolution of the Federal Parliament as of 1990 186 

14 Organization of the Federal Executive Council and 

Administrative Agencies, 1990 188 

15 Terrain Considerations in Military Operations 236 

16 Organization of the Armed Forces, 1990 238 

17 Command and Control of the Armed Forces, 1990 242 

18 Military Ranks and Insignia, 1990 264 



In the 1980s, Yugoslavia passed through a time of political, so- 
cial, and economic transition that changed many of its basic insti- 
tutions and threatened the very political structure of the nation. 
Events occurring after the death of Josip Broz Tito in 1980, and 
especially those at the end of the 1980s, demanded a new and up- 
dated version of Yugoslavia: A Country Study. Because Yugoslavia 
was already tr most open of East European communist nations, 
large amounts >_ J* "-eliable information about events there have been 
available throughout the post-Tito period. A number of us*, "ul 
monographs and a host of scholarly articles and periodical reports 
have provided the basis for this new treatment of the country. The 
most useful of those sources are cited at the end of each chapter. 

The authors of this edition have described changes in the last 
ten years against the historical, political, and social background 
of Yugoslavia. Each of the six Yugoslav republics and two provinces 
is treated separately in some respects, because of substantial differ- 
ences in their social and political makeup and their history before 
1918. The authors have attempted to describe the centrifugal im- 
pact of those differences on the history of the Yugoslav state, and 
especially on its current condition. With that in mind, several ta- 
bles in the Appendix break down ethnographic and economic statis- 
tics by republic and province. 

Yugoslav personal names are uniformly rendered in the Latin 
orthography used in Croatia and Slovenia, with the single excep- 
tion that the spelling "dj" is used to replace the single letter that 
represents that sound in the Croatian system. As was not the case 
in the preceding edition, diacritics are supplied wherever appropri- 
ate. The spelling of geographical names conforms to that approved 
by the United States Board on Geographical Names, with the ex- 
ception of commonly used international spellings such as Belgrade 
(Beograd) and Bosnia (Bosna). On maps English-language gener- 
ic designations such as river, plain, and mountain are used. Or- 
ganizations commonly known by their acronyms (such as LCY, 
the League of Communists of Yugoslavia) are introduced first by 
their full English names. 

Measurements are given in the metric system; a conversion ta- 
ble is provided in the Appendix. A glossary and a bibliography 
are also included at the end of the book. 


Country Profile 


Formal Name: Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. 
Short Form: Yugoslavia. 
Term for Citizens: Yugoslav(s). 
Capital: Belgrade. 


Size: Approximately 255,804 square kilometers. 

Topography: Two principal regions. Successive mountain ranges 
run parallel to Adriatic coast, from Austrian border (northwest) 


to Greek border (southeast), occupying entire southern half of coun- 
try. Second major region Pannonian Plains, occupying northeast 
section, extending from Austria (north) to Romania (east). 

Climate: Generally temperate but varies from moderate Mediter- 
ranean along Adriatic coast to colder continental conditions in 
mountains and plains of east-central and northern sections of 


Population: 1990 estimate 23.5 million; 1990 annual growth rate 
0.6 percent; 1988 population density 92.1 per square kilometer. 

Languages: Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, and Macedonian official 
state languages. Main national minority languages Albanian and 

Ethnic Groups: Serbs, Croats, Muslim Slavs, Slovenes, Macedo- 
nians, and Montenegrins (all ethnically South Slavs, together con- 
stituting over 80 percent of total population) the main ethnic groups. 
Albanians and Hungarians (7.7 percent and 1.9 percent, respec- 
tively, according to 1981 census) the principal minority ethnic groups. 

Education and Literacy: Education compulsory between ages 
seven and fifteen. Literacy estimated at 90 percent in 1990. Ex- 
tensive growth in education system in post-World War II era 
through 1980; slower growth and restructuring in 1980s. 

Health: Republic and province constitutions stipulate universal 
citizen rights to health care. General health insurance program cov- 
ered most of population, with some exceptions in rural areas. Sub- 
stantial expansion of health care resources beginning in 1960s, but 
disparities remained significant between rural and urban areas and 
between richer and poorer regions. 

Religion: In 1990 Roman Catholic (30 percent), Serbian and 
Macedonian Orthodox (50 percent), Muslim (9 percent), Protes- 
tant (1 percent), and other (10 percent). Estimates of religious faiths 
vary widely. 


Gross National Product (GNP): Estimated at US$120.1 billion 
in 1990, or US$5,040 per capita. Average growth rate 0.5 percent 
in 1981-88 period. Economic growth slow throughout 1980s be- 
cause of foreign debt and spiraling inflation. 


Industry and Mining: Largest sector, accounting for 44.6 per- 
cent of GNP in 1988. Relatively broad base, with substantial 
petrochemical, metallurgy, automobile manufacture, and electron- 
ics. Substantial ferrous and nonferrous mining industries. 

Agriculture: Consists of small, highly developed social sector and 
large private sector (95 percent of farm employment). Private farms 
averaged 3.5 hectares and fragmented. Main crops corn, rye, and 
wheat, with variety of additional produce. Livestock (pigs, horses, 
cattle, and sheep) more important than cropping but limited by 
fodder shortage. 

Energy: National energy shortage despite large deposits of low- 
calorie coal (lignite) and some crude oil and gas. 

Exports: US$13 billion in 1988, of which 31 percent machinery 
and transportation equipment, 42 percent semifinished and raw 
materials, and 9 percent agricultural commodities. Largest export 
markets Soviet Union, Italy, West Germany, and United States. 

Imports: US$13.6 billion in 1988, of which 46 percent semifinished 
and raw materials, 27 percent machinery and transportation equip- 
ment, and 6 percent agricultural commodities. Largest import sup- 
pliers West Germany, Soviet Union, Italy, and United States. 

Balance of Payments: Deteriorated during 1970s and 1980s. Re- 
mained serious constraint on growth in 1980s. 

Exchange Rate: New "heavy" dinar established in 1990, worth 
10,000 old dinars; 1990 exchange rate fixed at 7 dinars per West 
German deutsche mark. New rate January 1991 set at YD10.50 
per US$1. 

Inflation: In late 1989 about 1 ,950 percent; reduced to zero per- 
cent by reforms of 1990. 

Fiscal Year: Calendar year. 

Fiscal Policy: Governmental system highly decentralized. Feder- 
al budget expenditures, mainly for defense and administration, 
about one-quarter of total public sector budgeting. Economic re- 
forms of 1990 used fiscal policy to eliminate inflation. Constitu- 
tional amendments aimed at stimulating private investment in 
formerly state-funded enterprises. 


Railroads: Total freight carried 83.6 million tons in 1978; total 
passengers 116 million in 1988. In 1990 total track about 9,300 


kilometers, of which all was standard gauge, 3,800 kilometers elec- 
trified, and 10 percent double track. 

Civil Aviation: In 1989 Yugoslav Air Transport operated 291 
domestic and international routes. Major international airports at 
Belgrade, Zagreb, Ljubljana, Sarajevo, Skopje, Dubrovnik, Split, 
Titograd, Maribor, and Zadar. 

Highways: 120,700 kilometers total, all but 15,100 kilometers hard 
surface in 1990. About 232 million tons freight transported in 1986. 

Inland Waterways: 2,600 kilometers in 1982. About 16.2 million 
tons goods unloaded in 1988. 

Ports: Nine major ports, of which Rijeka, Split, Bar, and Ploce 
most important; twenty-four minor ports. Total ocean freight 34. 1 
million tons in 1988. Belgrade most important river port. 

Pipelines: 2,215 kilometers for crude oil; 2,880 kilometers for 
natural gas; and 150 kilometers for refined products (1990). 

Telecommunications: Government-operated national direct-dial tel- 
ephone system, including ten telephones per 100 residents in 1982. 
Yugoslav Radio and Television Network operated 250 stations, with 
national and local programming, in 1986. Two satellite dishes of 
International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (Intel- 
sat) located in Yugoslavia. 


Government: Federal system in which federal government and 
governments of six republics and two provinces (with limited 
autonomy) shared power and authority. After death of dictator 
Josip Broz Tito in 1980, head of state began annual rotation among 
members of eight-member State Presidency. Federal Executive 
Council (FEC) acted as cabinet; its president was prime minister 
and de facto head of government. Legislative branch was bicameral 
Federal Assembly (SkupStina), representing republics and social 
organizations. Decision making slow, often cumbersome; proposals 
subject to veto by republics whose interests were threatened. 

Politics: Until 1990, sole center of political power was League of 
Communists of Yugoslavia (LCY). Its split along republic lines 
coincided with growth of many noncommunist parties, mostly re- 
public based, in late 1980s. First noncommunist republic government 


elected in Croatia in 1990. Multiparty elections held in all repub- 
lics in 1990. 

Foreign Relations: Maintained nonaligned international position 
after breaking with Soviet Union in 1948; remained a leader of 
world Nonaligned Movement through 1980s. Previously balanced 
relations with Soviet Union and West tilted toward West after eco- 
nomic and political crises in Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in 
late 1980s. 

International Agreements and Memberships: Member of United 
Nations and most of its specialized agencies. Observer status in 
Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon). Also mem- 
ber of World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and 
General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). 


Armed Forces: Yugoslav People's Army (YPA) included army, 
air force, and navy, administered in four military regions. In 
mid- 1990 army numbered 140,000 active-duty personnel (of which 
90,000 conscripts); air force, 32,000 (4,000 conscripts); and navy, 
10,000 (4,400 conscripts, 900 marines). Estimated 450,000 reserv- 
ists available in wartime. Paramilitary Territorial Defense Forces 
(TDF) numbered 1 million to 3 million in 1990; 860,000 in regu- 
lar training. TDF largely funded by and under peacetime control 
of republic governments; designated to fight either independently 
or under YPA command during an invasion. 

Major Military Units: Major force structure change in army in 
1990. Thirty brigades formed, including tank, mechanized, moun- 
tain infantry, and one airborne brigade. Naval submarines, cor- 
vettes, and frigates centered in Adriatic Fleet, administered from 
Split; smaller craft in both river and Adriatic commands; main mis- 
sion Adriatic coastal defense. Air force operated over 400 combat 
aircraft (in twelve combat squadrons) and 200 helicopters. Main 
missions of air force to maintain air superiority over Yugoslavia 
and to support ground and naval operations. Substantial reliance 
on imported heavy military equipment; most aircraft and naval 
vessels manufactured domestically. Strong effort to expand domestic 
arms industry in 1980s. 

Military Budget: In 1989 defense expenditures listed as equiva- 
lent of over US$4.4 billion, nearly 7 percent of GNP. 

Internal Security Forces: State Security Service (an intelligence 
and secret police organization) monitored emigres and domestic 


dissidents. People's Militia troops (15,000) used to quell domestic 
disorders beyond control of regular police. Militia (regular police, 
40,000) used for routine law enforcement. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Figure 1. Administrative Divisions of Yugoslavia, 1990 



BY 1990 YUGOSLAVIA, "the land of the South Slavs," had be- 
come an international metaphor for ethnic strife and political frag- 
mentation. Mikhail S. Gorbachev was described as attempting to 
keep the Soviet Union from becoming a "giant Yugoslavia" when 
Soviet republics began clamoring for independence in 1989. The 
metaphor was based on diversity in almost every aspect of Yugo- 
slav national life — historical experiences, standard of living, the 
relationship of the people to the land, and religious, cultural, and 
political traditions — among the six republics and the two provinces 
that constituted the federal state. 

In spite of ongoing conflict and fragmentation, many aspects of 
life in the country as a whole underwent significant improvement 
in the post-World War II period. A fundamentally agrarian socie- 
ty was industrialized and urbanized, and standards of living rose 
dramatically in most regions between 1945 and 1970. The literacy 
rate increased steadily, school instruction in the country's several 
minority languages became widespread, and the university system 
expanded. A national health care system was developed to protect 
most Yugoslav citizens, although serious defects remained in rural 
medical care. The traditional patriarchal family, once the most im- 
portant social institution in most regions, lost its influence as Yu- 
goslavs became more mobile and as large numbers of women 
entered the work force. In these same years, Yugoslavia adopted 
a unique economic planning system (socialist self-management) and 
an independent foreign policy (nonalignment) to meet its own 
domestic and security needs. In these ways, by 1980 Yugoslavia 
had assumed many of the qualities of a modern European state. 
In the following decade, as Western Europe moved toward unifi- 
cation, acceptance into the new European community became an 
important national goal for Yugoslavia. 

The 1980s brought persistent challenges to the concept of feder- 
ating the South Slavs. Although the unlikelihood of a union be- 
tween "Catholic, westward-looking Croatia and Slovenia" and 
"Orthodox, eastward-looking Serbia" had been viewed as highly 
unlikely long before secession occurred and civil crisis escalated 
in 1991, arguments for preserving at least a loose Yugoslav con- 
federation retained much of the logic of earlier decades. All regions 
of Yugoslavia were substantially interdependent economically 
throughout the postwar period. Although regions differed greatly 


in economic level, in 1991 many of the most profitable markets 
for all republics remained inside Yugoslavia. More important, in 
modern history only Montenegro and Serbia had existed as indepen- 
dent states, and no republic had been self-sufficient since 1918. 

Nevertheless, in 1991 the six republics — Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Slovenia — 
and the two provinces, Kosovo and Vojvodina, moved decisively 
away from whatever unity had been achieved in the postwar peri- 
od. Given the lack of common values between Orthodox Serbs in 
Belgrade and Muslim Slavs in Sarajevo, or between private en- 
trepreneurs in Slovenia and Leninists in Montenegro, many ex- 
perts argued that the survival and modernization of the postwar 
Yugoslav state had been the result of a unique, dominating perso- 
nality, Josip Broz Tito, whose regime had orchestrated all the so- 
cial, economic, and foreign policy changes. According to that 
theory, post-Tito separation of Yugoslavia's constituent parts was 
the natural course of events. 

The fall of East European communism at the end of the 1980s 
intensified the forces of fragmentation in Yugoslavia by finally 
replacing the decrepit League of Communists of Yugoslavia 
(LCY — see Glossary), which had checked political expression of 
ethnic differences, with an open system that fostered such expres- 
sion. But separation proved to be no less complex than continued 
federation. The first obstacle to dividing the federation was dis- 
agreement on the identity of its constituent parts — a result of cen- 
turies of ethnic intermixture and jurisdictional shifts. The second 
obstacle was the fact that the parts were not only diverse but also 
of unequal political and economic stature. Beginning in 1990, the 
Republic of Serbia, still run by a conventional communist regime, 
attempted to restrain fragmentation by reviving its historical tradi- 
tion of geopolitical dominance in the Balkans. At the same time, 
the republics of Slovenia and Croatia used their economic superi- 
ority to seek independence on their own terms. The less endowed 
regions, caught between these contradictory aims, took sides or be- 
came pawns. The military and political events of 1991 then intensi- 
fied the struggle of the diverse parts to achieve diverse aims. In the 
struggle, each of the political units had a different stake in, and a 
different perspective on, the theory that a post-Tito Yugoslav fed- 
eration could work. Ominously, the intractable fighting of 1991 be- 
tween Croats and Serbs was in many ways a continuation of their 
last bitter confrontation in World War II — supporting doubts that 
the Croats and Serbs could remain together in a single political 


The Yugoslav nation-state had begun as the dream of nineteenth- 
century idealists who envisioned a political union of the major South 
Slavic groups: the Croats, Serbs, Slovenes, and Bulgars. But by 
the twentieth century, each of those groups, as well as a number 
of smaller ethnic communities within their territories, had ex- 
perienced centuries of very diverse cultural and political influences. 
Under these limitations, the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and 
Slovenes (later renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia) was formed 
as a constitutional monarchy after World War I. 

The interwar period was dominated by the competing claims of 
Serbian and Croatian politicians — the former dominating the 
government and supporting a strong centralized state, the latter 
agitating for regional autonomy. King Aleksandar, a genuine be- 
liever in the Yugoslav ideal, sought to unify his country by a vari- 
ety of political measures, including dictatorship, but he was 
assassinated in 1934. Lacking a tradition of political compromise 
that might forge a national consensus, Yugoslavia remained divided 
as World War II began. More than three years of Nazi occupa- 
tion yielded bloody fighting among three Yugoslav factions as well 
as with the invaders. 

Two results of that war had particular impact on the postwar 
condition of Yugoslavia. The first was a vivid new set of memories 
to kindle hostility between Serbs and Croats, the majority of whom 
had fought on opposite sides in the occupation years; the second 
was the emergence of the unifying war hero Tito, who became dic- 
tator of a nonaligned communist federation. After declaring in- 
dependence from the Soviet alliance in 1948, Tito also modified 
Yugoslavia's Stalinist command economy by giving local worker 
groups limited control in a self-management system. Although ul- 
timately dominated by the party, this system brought substantial 
economic growth between the early 1950s and the 1970s and made 
Yugoslavia a model for the nonaligned world. 

Two economic policies unknown in orthodox communist coun- 
tries contributed gready to this growth. Allowing laborers to emi- 
grate to Western Europe as guest workers brought substantial hard 
currency (see Glossary) into Yugoslavia and relieved labor surpluses 
at home. And opening the country's many scenic beaches and 
mountains to Western tourists provided a second reliable source 
of hard currency, which proved especially useful when other parts 
of the economy declined during the 1980s. 

In his later years, Tito began restructuring his government to pre- 
pare it for the post-Tito era. The last decade of the Tito regime paved 
the way for a power-sharing government-by-consensus that he 
saw as the best hope of binding the federation after his regime ended. 


The 1974 Constitution gave substantial new power to the repub- 
lics, which obtained veto power over federal legislation. This tac- 
tic also kept Tito's potential rivals within small local fiefdoms, 
denying them national status. Both the government and the rul- 
ing LCY became increasingly stratified between federal and regional 
organizations; by Tito's later years, the locus of political power 
was already diffused. 

In the meantime, in 1966 the repressive national secret police 
organization of Aleksandar Rankovic had been dismantled, yield- 
ing political liberalization that led to major outbursts of national- 
ism in Kosovo (1968) and Croatia (1971). Although Tito quelled 
such movements, they restated existing threats to a strong, Serb- 
dominated central government, a concept still cherished by the 
Serbs. The 1974 Constitution further alarmed the Serbs by giving 
virtual autonomy to Serbia's provinces, Kosovo and Vojvodina. 

At Tito's death in 1980, the promising Yugoslav economy was 
in decline because of international oil crises, heavy foreign bor- 
rowing, and inefficient investment policies. Economic reform, 
recognized throughout the 1980s as an imperative step, was con- 
sistently blocked during that decade by ever moif diametrically 
opposed regional interests that found litde incentive to compromise 
in the decentralized post-Tito federal structure. Thus, Slovenia and 
Croatia, already long separate culturally from the rest of the fed- 
eration, came to resist the central government policy of redistribut- 
ing their relatively great wealth to impoverished regions to the south. 
By 1990 this resistance was both economic (withholding revenue 
from the federal treasury) and political (threatening secession un- 
less granted substantial economic and political autonomy within 
the federation). 

The decade that followed the death of Tito was a time of gradu- 
al deterioration and a period that saw ethnic hostility boiling just 
below the surface of the Yugoslav political culture. The 1980s in 
Yugoslavia was also a decade singularly lacking strong political 
leadership in the Tito tradition, even at the regional level. When 
the wave of anticommunist political and economic reform swept 
Eastern Europe in the late 1980s, a variety of noncommunist par- 
ties challenged the monolithic Yugoslav communist system in place 
since 1945. In 1990 the LCY gave up its stranglehold on national 
political power. Long-overdue economic reforms began promis- 
ingly in 1990 but then slowed abruptly as regions defended their 
vested interests in the status quo. Meanwhile, in 1989 the Serbian 
communist Slobodan Milosevic had stepped into the Yugoslav pow- 
er vacuum, striking a note of Serbian national hegemony that 


confronted a wide range of newly released nationalist forces in the 
other republics. 

The Yugoslav republics were further separated by their varied 
reactions to the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe. Already 
pro-Western and economically dissatisfied, Slovenia and Croatia 
were the first republics to hold multiparty elections in early 1990; 
both elected noncommunist republic governments. Later in 1990, 
the republics of Macedonia and Bosnia and Hercegovina followed 
suit, but Serbia and Montenegro (Serbia's most loyal ally in the 
federation) gave decisive victories to the communists in their repub- 
lic elections. By that time, the LCY had split along republic lines 
and renounced its role as the leading institution in Yugoslav 
society — a position that since 1945 had been the foundation of the 
party's legitimacy. 

Already in the late 1980s, a large variety of small parties and 
factions had sprouted throughout the country. These groups ad- 
vocated radical, nationalist, environmentalist, regional, and reli- 
gious agendas. By the first republic elections in 1990, some of the 
new parties had formed coalitions. The largest of these in Croa- 
tia, the right-of-center Croatian Democratic Union, gained a solid 
parliamentary majority in that republic under Franjo Tudjman, 
who became president. In Slovenia, former communist Milan Ku- 
Can reached the presidency as leader of the diverse anticommunist 
Demos coalition. In general, although parties with very similar 
philosophies existed in two or more republics, issues of nationality 
prevented the union of such parties across republic borders. 

Among Yugoslavia's postwar trouble spots, the Serbian province 
of Kosovo was the most enduringly problematic both economical- 
ly and politically. Always the poorest region in Yugoslavia (in spite 
of significant mineral and fuel reserves), Kosovo also led by a wide 
margin in birth rates and unemployment rates. Its territory was 
claimed on valid historical grounds by two fiercely nationalistic eth- 
nic groups — the Kosovo Albanians and the Serbs. Although they 
constituted a shrinking minority in Kosovo, the Serbs and Mon- 
tenegrins controlled the province government and suppressed 
separatist movements in the province — adding to the resentment 
of the Albanian majority. Sporadic anti- Yugoslav propaganda from 
neighboring Albania reminded the Kosovo Albanians of their sub- 
servient position. Extensive federal economic aid programs through- 
out the 1970s and 1980s failed to eliminate the economic basis of 
discontent. In February 1989, units of the Yugoslav People's Army 
(YPA) and the federal militia were called in to quell the violence, 
and the province remained under occupation for the next three 


The autonomy granted to Kosovo in the 1974 Constitution was 
virtually revoked by 1990. But resistance in Kosovo continued. Al- 
banians boycotted the multiparty Serbian elections in December 
1990, and in 1991 students and workers staged mass demonstra- 
tions against Serbianization of education and workplaces. Although 
Serbia had suspended the province legislature in mid- 1990, Alba- 
nian delegates and intellectuals adopted a constitution for an in- 
dependent republic of Kosovo, which was ratified in a referendum 
in September 1991 . Meanwhile, Serbia had amended its constitu- 
tion to abolish the remnants of self-rule in Kosovo and in Serbia's 
second province, Vojvodina. In 1990 drastic political reform in iso- 
lationist Albania gave Kosovo Albanians a new political option 
previously judged undesirable : joining Albania in a union of Greater 
Albania. By 1991 Kosovan separatist groups deemphasized the goal 
of republic status within Yugoslavia in favor of ethnic unity with 
their fellow Albanians. Such an eventuality threatened to spark war 
between Serbia and Albania as well as conflict with Macedonia, 
where over 25 percent of the population was Albanian in 1991. 

The chaotic condition of Kosovo was a sensitive issue through- 
out postwar Yugoslav national politics. In the late 1980s, the issue 
assumed even greater dimensions, however. Milosevic used the 
threat of Albanian irredentism in Kosovo to rally Serbian ethnic 
pride behind his nationalist faction of the League of Communists 
of Serbia. In doing so, he won the presidency of Serbia. By 1990 
this single-issue strategy had made Milosevic the most powerful 
political figure in post-Tito Yugoslavia. His open ambition for pow- 
er and his assertion of Serbian hegemony soon added Macedonia 
and Bosnia and Hercegovina to the list of republics opposing Ser- 
bia in federal disputes. Despite widely held contempt for com- 
munism, however, opposition within Serbia remained fragmented 
and ineffectual until 1991 . In the first multiparty elections in post- 
war Serbia, Milosevic easily won reelection in December 1990. Be- 
cause he controlled almost all the Serbian media, his campaign was 
able to ignore the chaotic Serbian economy. 

In October 1990, internal and external conditions caused Slovenia 
and Croatia to seek independence in some form. Accordingly, the 
two republics proposed that Yugoslavia be restructured as a loose 
confederation of states, each with national sovereignty and its own 
army and each conducting its own foreign policy. Following the 
model of the European Economic Community (EEC — see Glos- 
sary), the formula included monetary uniformity and a common 
market. Serbia immediately blocked the plan, arguing that the large 
number of Serbs living in republics other than Serbia would be- 
come citizens of foreign countries. Beginning in 1990, groups from 


severed Serbian enclaves in Croatia, some of which declared them- 
selves the Krajina Serbian Autonomous Region in March 1991, 
skirmished with local police and Croatian security forces. Milo- 
sevic was suspected of giving this movement substantial encourage- 
ment. By early 1991, large caches of illegally imported arms were 
held by both Serbs and Croats in multiethnic parts of Croatia, 
sharpening the threat of full-scale civil war. 

Complex population patterns had been established in most of 
Yugoslavia by centuries of cultural, political, and military influences 
from outside — most notably the settlement policies of the long- 
dominant Habsburg and Ottoman empires. In fact, remaining eth- 
nic patterns blocked a clean break from the federation by any repub- 
lic except homogeneous Slovenia because large populations would 
be left behind unless borders were substantially redrawn. Even if 
Krajina had seceded from Croatia to join Serbia, for example, a 
substantial number of Serbs would have remained scattered in the 
Republic of Croatia. 

Early in 1991, local conflicts in Krajina brought threats from 
MiloSevic to defend his countrymen from oppression, and tension 
mounted between Serbia and Croatia. In April 1991, Krajina 
declared itself part of Serbia; the Croats responded by tightening 
economic pressure on the region and by threatening to redraw their 
own boundaries to include adjacent parts of Bosnia inhabited by 
a Croatian majority. In early 1991, however, moderates on both 
sides managed to defuse numerous local crises and prevent a broader 

Meanwhile, a major indication of Serbian political diversity ap- 
peared in March 1991 when anticommunist Serbs held a mass 
demonstration in Belgrade against the economic bungling and dic- 
tatorial practices of the MiloSevic government. When MiloSevic 
demanded that the YPA quell the uprising in his capital, half of 
the eight-member State Presidency of Yugoslavia (nominally com- 
mander in chief of the armed forces) voted against the measure. 
Repeating his frequent claim that an anti-Serb coalition was en- 
dangering Yugoslavia, MiloSevic secured the resignation of the other 
four members of the State Presidency (delegates from Serbia, Mon- 
tenegro, Kosovo, and Vojvodina, all of whom he controlled). The 
crisis peaked when YPA troops mobilized but remained inactive, 
and MiloSevic soon instructed the four delegates to resume their 

This confrontation seemingly dealt MiloSevic a double blow: 
recanting his position toward the State Presidency was a major 
retreat for this most visible Yugoslav politician, and he lost substan- 
tial popularity among Serbs for his willingness to send the military 


against his own people. More important, the largely peaceful 
demonstrations set a precedent for public discussion of issues in 
Serbia, temporarily improving the prospects of a viable multiparty 
system in that republic. 

In the months following the Belgrade demonstrations, the Serbs 
adopted a more conciliatory position in State Presidency-sponsored 
talks with representatives of the other republics on loosening the 
political structure of the federal system. MiloSevic continued rail- 
ing against Croatian nationalist ambitions, hoping to provoke an 
incident that would justify YPA occupation of Croatia. In May 
1991 , violence in Krajina subsided when the State Presidency and 
the republic presidents reached an accord on jurisdictions and bor- 
ders in areas disputed between Serbs and Croats. 

At the same time, the Slovenes and Croats had continued the 
slow, steady brinkmanship of their relations with the federal govern- 
ment. In February 1991 , both republic assemblies had passed reso- 
lutions to dissolve the Yugoslav federation into separate states as 
the next step after their 1990 declarations of the right to secede. 
The respective assemblies also passed constitutional amendments 
declaring republic law supreme over federal law and essentially over- 
riding the authority of the federal Constitution. 

Then in June 1991, Croatia and Slovenia declared their indepen- 
dence, which set off a new chain of events. Under orders from the 
Serb-dominated federal Secretariat for National Defense but without 
approval of the State Presidency, YPA units occupied strategic 
points in Slovenia on the pretext of defending Yugoslav territorial 
integrity against an illegal secession. After encountering unexpect- 
edly stiff resistance from Slovenian territorial defense forces, the 
YPA withdrew from Slovenian territory. YPA embarrassment at 
this military failure was only partially averted by a three-month 
cease-fire arranged by the European Community (EC — see Glos- 
sary). When Slovenia reasserted its independence at the end of that 
time, the YPA made no response. 

The cease-fire in Slovenia moved the conflict decisively from 
Slovenia to Croatia. Croatia's declaration of independence ena- 
bled MiloSevic to strengthen his position as defender of the Serbi- 
an minority in Croatia, which now seemed poised to absorb its Serbs 
into a separate state. Under the banner of anti-Croatian Serbian 
nationalism, economic failures and internal political differences be- 
came secondary; MiloSevic abandoned his conciliatory approach 
and regained his political foothold. 

The first phase of the 1991 Serb-Croat conflict pitted Serbian 
guerrillas against Croatian militia in the regions of Croatia with 
large Serbian populations. The YPA intervened, ostensibly as a 


peacekeeping force preventing a wider conflict. The YPA role soon 
evolved into one of support for the Serbs and then into active oc- 
cupation of Croatian territory, with no pretense of neutrality. Croa- 
tian forces besieged and captured YPA warehouses and garrisons, 
somewhat improving their decidedly inferior military position. 
Through the summer and fall of 1991 , prolonged, sometimes siege- 
like battles raged in Croatia between Serbian guerrillas and the 
YPA on one side and the Croatian militia on the other. The areas 
of heaviest fighting were the population centers of Slavonia in 
eastern Croatia and the ports along the Adriatic coastline. Between 
August and December, fourteen cease-fires were arranged but were 
shortly violated by both sides. The EC, which feared the spread 
of ethnic conflict into other parts of Europe, arranged most of those 
agreements; Gorbachev was the broker of one. An estimated 10,000 
people, the majority of them Croats, were killed in the conflict in 
the last four months of 1991, and about 600,000 people became 
refugees. During most of that time, Serbian and YPA forces oc- 
cupied about one-third of Croatia. 

Throughout the political and economic turmoil of the late 1980s 
and 1990, two national institutions survived: the YPA and the fed- 
eral government. After World War II, the YPA had played the 
theoretical role of defender of the country's vaunted independent 
international position against attack from east or west. The YPA 
remained a bastion of conservative political influence after Cold 
War threats subsided and after electoral and legislative setbacks 
had sapped the unifying power of the LCY in 1990. 

Led by an officer corps heavily Serbian and Montenegrin, the 
YPA took a dim view of rampant political diversification that threat- 
ened the power of the central government. Especially troubling were 
Slovenian and Croatian assertions of republic sovereignty over lo- 
cal military units, which threatened the very existence of the YPA 
organization. The failure of the old system also threatened the life- 
style of the YPA officer corps, which had enjoyed privileges such 
as summer houses on the Adriatic and generous pensions as part 
of their elite status in Yugoslav society. 

Several times in 1990 and early 1991, Serbian and federal offi- 
cials threatened to use YPA troops to restore order or protect fed- 
eral property. In January 1991, Defense Secretary Veljko Kadijevic, 
a Serb, threatened to send YPA forces into Croatia when that repub- 
lic formed its own military establishment, and in March YPA units 
confronted mass demonstrations in Belgrade. After preliminary 
mobilization in the Belgrade crisis, a divided high command an- 
nounced that it would not intervene in political disputes unless armed 
conflict erupted in one of the republics. Although this statement 


deferred the often-mentioned scenario of a military coup to hold 
the nation together, in the spring of 1991 the YPA intervened in 
dozens of battles between separatist Serbs and Croatian authori- 
ties in Croatia. 

Forces of change began to affect the YPA by 1990. Disintegra- 
tion of the LCY removed the ideological unity of the YPA (whose 
political power had been exercised through representation in party 
organizations) and negated its role as defender of the ruling party. 
LCY activity in the army was officially outlawed in late 1990, and 
all political organization in the military was to be banned in 1991 
legislation. One response to depolitization was the formation in 
November 1990 of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia- 
Movement for Yugoslavia by a group of retired YPA officers to 
replace the old LCY as an advocate of preserving the existing fed- 
eral structure. This party advocated continued socialism and con- 
demned Slovenia and Croatia as capitalist puppets. 

In February 1991 , Slovenia and Croatia proposed that new, depo- 
liticized professional military organizations be formed in each repub- 
lic, and the two republics announced that they would slash sup- 
port for the national military budget. At the same time, federal 
military spending decreased because of budget deficits, and the relia- 
bility of conscripts from Kosovo and other areas came increasing- 
ly into question. All republics save Serbia and Montenegro refused 
to provide recruits for the 1991 YPA action in Croatia; when draft 
evasion became a problem even in Serbia, the long-term future 
of the YPA became doubtful. Although the YPA was the fifth-largest 
armed force in Europe in 1991, its command structure and resource 
base were shown to be unreliable in combat. Nevertheless, as the 
authority of the Yugoslav federal government dwindled and ar- 
bitration of disputes faltered, the on-site power of the military often 
negated the civilian authority meant to restrain it. The unpredic- 
tability of YPA forces became a major obstacle for United Nations 
(UN) diplomats seeking an effective cease-fire between Serbian and 
Croatian forces at the end of 1991. 

Economic reform remained a critical national and regional need 
in 1991. When economist Ante Markovic became prime minister 
at the end of 1989, he inherited an inflation rate that had reached 
2,600 percent that year and a national average personal income 
that had sunk to 1960s levels. Markovic's two-step program be- 
gan with harsh measures, such as closing unproductive plants, freez- 
ing wages, and instituting a tight monetary policy to clear away 
the remainder of the moribund state-subsidized system as soon as 
possible. Markovic also avidly sought new economic ties with 


Western Europe to reinvigorate Yugoslavia's traditional policy of 
multilateral trade. 

Once inflation had been curbed, phase two (July 1990) continued 
tight monetary control but sought to spur lagging productivity by 
encouraging private and foreign investment and unfreezing wages. 
Markovic applied his plan doggedly, convincing the Federal As- 
sembly (SkupStina) to pass most of its provisions. He was aided 
by the lack of workable alternatives among his critics, by the in- 
ternational credibility of his consultation with economists of the 
International Monetary Fund (IMF — see Glossary), and by his per- 
sonal popularity. Inflation ended when the dinar (for value of the 
dinar — see Glossary) was pegged to the deutsche mark in Decem- 
ber 1989, and new foreign loans and joint ventures in 1990 im- 
proved capital investment. 

Although the end of inflation was very popular, however, plant 
closure and wage freezes were decidedly not so in regions where 
as many as 80 percent of plants were kept running only because 
of state subsidies. The Serbs opposed the plan from the beginning 
because their communist-dominated industrial management sys- 
tem was still in place, meaning that a new market economy would 
threaten many privileged positions. The Slovenes resented feder- 
alization of their funds to help run the program. In all republics, 
the immediate threat of mass unemployment blunted the drive to 
privatize and to peg wages to productivity. As in previous years, 
the republics saw a threat to their autonomy if they acceded to the 
requirements of such a sweeping federal program. By the fall of 
1990, the optimism of Markovic 's first stage was replaced by the 
realization that many enterprises throughout the country either 
could not or would not discontinue their inefficient operations and 
would remain socially owned. Several major industries in Slove- 
nia and Croatia were also still state controlled in 1991, although 
both republics drafted privatization laws that year. 

The Serbian economy continued to decline at an especially rapid 
rate after the Markovic reforms. In December 1990, the Serbian 
government illegally transferred US$1 .3 billion from the National 
Bank of Yugoslavia to bolster the sagging republic economy — 
defying federal economic authority, further alienating the other 
republics, and exposing the failure of reform in the Yugoslav bank- 
ing system. 

The proportion of unprofitable enterprises in the national econ- 
omy (about one-third) did not change between 1989 and 1990. By 
1991 bankruptcy declarations by such firms had virtually ceased. 
Strikes decreased only slightly from a 1989 high of 1 ,900. A wave 
of strikes, mostly by blue-collar workers, slowed the economy in 


all regions of Yugoslavia at the end of 1990. At that point, infla- 
tion had risen to 118 percent per year and was expected to con- 
tinue to rise into 1991, spurred by the Serbian bank transaction 
and unauthorized printing of money by republics in the last half 
of 1990. In mid- 1991 inflation rose further when the federal govern- 
ment began printing more money to cover escalating military costs. 
By that time, the government had lost control of federal tax 
revenues, which were collected by the republics. Unemployment 
was close to 25 percent in January 1991, and no improvement in 
the standard of living was foreseen in the near future. Industrial 
production that month was down 18.2 percent from January 1990, 
the greatest such drop in forty years. The failure to devise a new 
banking system after the previous system collapsed increased black 
market financial activity and discouraged guest workers abroad from 
making deposits. 

Markovic warned consistendy that continued chaos jeopardized 
economic reform and ultimately the federation itself. The IMF, 
for example, had joined the EEC in offering a combined loan of 
US$2 billion in early 1991, but continued unrest threatened that 
vital arrangement. Already in January 1991, the EEC postponed 
consideration of membership for Yugoslavia because of the inter- 
nal situation. In early 1991, the United States cited human rights 
violations in Kosovo in threatening to end all bilateral economic 
aid. In the fall of 1991, the United States, the Soviet Union, and 
the EEC all threatened economic sanctions if diplomacy did not 
replace armed conflict in the Croatian crisis. The United States 
adopted sanctions against all the republics, but the EEC excluded 
Slovenia and Croatia. 

Already seriously undermined by the constitutional power of the 
republics, the Yugoslav federal government apparatus was com- 
pletely overshadowed in 1991. In December 1990, the Markovic 
cabinet had drafted an eleven-point emergency program of basic 
legislation to keep the federation running until the State Presiden- 
cy could agree on political reform. Four months later, however, 
the Federal Assembly was still debating some of those laws. Mar- 
kovid faced a delicate balance between using federal authority to 
hold the country together and heeding the demands of the econom- 
ically vital Slovenes and Croats to loosen the federation. In early 
1991, Markovic criticized those republics for arming separate 
paramilitary forces and passing resolutions of separation from Yu- 
goslavia. By April 1991, a substantial movement in the Federal 
Assembly sought to unseat Markovi6 as prime minister. But the 
economic ties he had formed with the West were correcdy seen by 
many politicians as the best way to save the Yugoslav economy, 


and Markovic remained because his ouster would likely end the 
prospect for such aid. 

Unlike most countries of Eastern Europe, Yugoslavia had be- 
gun major economic reform before making any changes in govern- 
ment structure. A round of constitutional amendments in 1990 dealt 
only with economic matters, leaving political power relationships 
untouched. Although Markovic had planned to call elections for 
a Federal Assembly to begin work on a new constitution in 1990, 
he achieved no consensus on the timing or form of those elections. 
Among other changes, the new constitution presumably would have 
revamped Tito's unworkable system of rotating chief executives. 
In March 1991, special "professional working groups," includ- 
ing members from each republic, began drafting for the State 
Presidency proposals on political and economic issues for possible 
use as constitutional amendments. The first proposal oudined a 
new federal structure; the second proposed a new procedure for 
a republic to secede from the federation — two of the most volatile 
issues of the "transformation period." 

The weakness of the national executive structure was revealed 
by the Belgrade demonstrations, when the eight-member State 
Presidency was essentially obliterated by walkouts and resignations 
orchestrated by Milosevic. After the full membership was reestab- 
lished, fruitless constitutional discussions and "summit meetings" 
further damaged confidence in the State Presidency. By July 1991, 
unauthorized YPA actions in Slovenia and Croatia had removed 
de facto command of the military from the State Presidency, and 
national executive authority had virtually disappeared. 

The events of 1991 forced all the republics to adjust their posi- 
tions and defend their own interests first, lessening the probability 
of reversing regionalization and reestablishing a credible federal 
government backed by a reframed constitution. The diametrical- 
ly opposed political blueprints of the centralist republics (Serbia 
and Montenegro) and the autonomist republics (Slovenia and Croa- 
tia, later joined by Macedonia and Bosnia and Hercegovina) meant 
that any attempt to redistribute power was very likely to be dead- 

While Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia occupied center stage in 
1991, the other three republics — Montenegro, Macedonia, and Bos- 
nia and Hercegovina — divided their attention between local eco- 
nomic and social problems and the transformation crisis of the 
federation. After moving gradually toward supporting republic 
sovereignty, Macedonia and Bosnia and Hercegovina were forced 
by circumstances in the fall of 1991 to declare their own indepen- 
dence. Montenegro remained allied with Serbia in support of a 


strong central government. Unlike Slovenia and Croatia, those 
republics had little hope of surviving independently, and all con- 
tained precariously balanced ethnic mixtures (the Montenegrin 
population included a total of 20 percent Albanians and Muslim 

In December 1990, Bosnia and Hercegovina elected a multiparty 
assembly in which the noncommunist Muslim Party for Democratic 
Action (PDA) won a plurality of the 240 seats, and PDA president 
Alija Izetbegovic became the first noncommunist president of the 
republic. The new assembly contained an ethnic mix representa- 
tive of the overall population: 99 Muslim Slavs, 83 Serbs, and 50 
Croats. Peaceful transition to a multiparty system in 1990 was con- 
sidered a triumph of the three major ethnic parties and a promis- 
ing indication that coalition building among them might work. In 
discussing the republic's position on a new federal structure in early 
1991 , the Serbian party advocated more centralism; the other two 
parties followed the Croatian and Slovenian recipe for a loose con- 
federation. In the first year of his presidency, Izetbegovic was a 
strong voice of conciliation on national constitutional issues, at- 
tempting to preserve political relations with all factions. 

Because of its ethnic makeup, Bosnia and Hercegovina was a 
central point of contention between Serbs and Croats. Both sides 
had substantial territorial claims that threatened to destabilize the 
republic's internal politics. Serbs feared that Croatia would take 
Croatian-dominated parts of Bosnia and Hercegovina with it if it 
seceded; Croats feared leaving those parts to the mercy of the Serbs. 
The Muslim Slavs, in turn, remembered that Croatia and Serbia 
had split Bosnia and Hercegovina between them before World War 
II, so the Muslim Slavs feared reabsorption into those states. With- 
in the six-member republic presidency, accusations and threats 
mimicked those exchanged by the factions in the federal executive 

In mid- 1991 the central location of Bosnia and Hercegovina be- 
tween Serbia and Croatia threatened to make it a second major 
military front in the Serb-Croat confrontation. When Croatian and 
Muslim Slav legislators sought to avoid a Serbian takeover by 
declaring the sovereignty of the republic in October, they an- 
tagonized their Serbian counterparts and exacerbated the threat 
of civil war. By that time, a large part of the population was armed 
and in the same explosive state as were the Serbian enclaves in 
Croatia a few months earlier. 

Macedonia, least developed of the six republics, began 1991 in 
worsening economic condition (official unemployment was 26 per- 
cent, but likely much higher in reality, and per capita earnings 


were 70 percent of the national average) and with new manifesta- 
tions of old problems: nationalism and ethnic tension. Politically, 
Macedonia had supported the Markovic economic reforms whole- 
heartedly; in the republic elections of November 1990, all six major 
party platforms advocated a multiparty parliamentary system and 
a market economy. In voting for their reconfigured unicameral as- 
sembly of 120, Macedonians gave a plurality to the noncommu- 
nist nationalist coalition Internal Macedonian Revolutionary 
Organization-Democratic Party for National Unity, with the 
League of Communists of Macedonia a close second among the 
sixteen parties that posted candidates. 

Anticommunism was much weaker in Macedonia than in Croatia 
and Slovenia. In 1945 Tito's recognition of Macedonia as a republic 
had freed the Macedonians from Serbian control and inspired strong 
loyalty to the Yugoslav federation. Nevertheless, in December 1990 
a number of Macedonian leaders, including Macedonia's delegate 
to the State Presidency, Vasil Tupurkovski, and Ljupco Georgiev- 
ski, head of the nationalist coalition, expressed solidarity with Slove- 
nian and Croatian declarations of autonomy. At the same time, 
however, they cautioned that Macedonia was not ready for such 
a move. Because Macedonians had been treated as Serbs (and 
Macedonia had been part of Serbia) before World War II, the ag- 
gressive nationalism of Milosevic brought alarm and hostility that 
was intensified by a new wave of Macedonian nationalism. Begin- 
ning in November 1988, a series of mass demonstrations demand- 
ed that Macedonia's Balkan neighbors, Greece and Bulgaria, 
recognize Macedonia's status as a Yugoslav republic (they had not 
done so because those countries had long-standing claims to parts 
of Macedonia) and treat their own Macedonian citizens as a separate 
minority. A significant faction in the republic advocated reunit- 
ing the Macedonians of all three countries in a new political entity. 

Another ethnic issue also festered in 1991. The illegal influx of 
as many as 150,000 Albanian refugees from Kosovo to Macedo- 
nia brought resentment and calls for closing the borders. Especially 
in Skopje, Albanians were refused status as a separate nationality 
and barred from some types of employment; demonstrations were 
forbidden. But the Albanian Party for Democratic Prosperity elected 
seventeen delegates to the Macedonian assembly in the 1990 repub- 
lic election. This significant departure from the total repression of 
the former communist regime in Macedonia brought hope that 
Albanian-Slav hostility would not spill over from Kosovo into 

Montenegro had been the first Yugoslav republic where com- 
munist leaders held talks with the political opposition; in January 


1990, Montenegro proposed a nationwide multiparty system for 
Yugoslavia. The talks grew out of the "Montenegrin Uprising" 
of 1989, in which mass demonstrations unseated the entire com- 
munist leadership and replaced it with a generation of younger com- 
munists seen as antibureaucratic reformers. But reformist zeal 
decreased in the next two years; republic multiparty elections were 
finally held in December 1990, but the League of Communists of 
Montenegro won 86 of the 125 assembly seats in a process marked 
by controversy and irregularities. Its candidate, Momir Bulato- 
vic, was elected president. Of the seven parties posting candidates 
in the election, four won seats. 

In the first multiparty election, the major Montenegrin parties 
agreed on several key positions: a sovereign Montenegro within 
a united Yugoslav federation; conversion to a market economy, 
with partial or complete rejection of socialism; and integration of 
Yugoslavia into the EEC. Issues of dispute were the nature and 
pace of economic reform, the structure of the new federal Yugo- 
slavia, and the advisable strategy for Montenegro should the 
federation dissolve. In spite of the reformist tendency of Montene- 
grin communists, the republic backed Milosevic in most of his dis- 
putes with the northern republics. In March 1991 , Prime Minister 
Milo Djukanovic" of Montenegro joined Milosevic in a statement 
that expressed identical goals for Yugoslavia as a federation and 
for their respective republics. In the second half of 1991, Mon- 
tenegro supported the Serbian diplomatic and military positions 
against Croatia, and YPA troops staged maneuvers against Croa- 
tia's Adriatic coastal cities from bases in Montenegro. 

October 31, 1991 

• * * 

In the months following completion of this manuscript, Serbian 
guerrillas and YPA forces continued to advance into Croatia and 
pound Croatian strongholds in Vukovar, Dubrovnik, Osijek, and 
other locations. Vukovar, in northeastern Croatia, was designat- 
ed for all-out defense by the Croats; after intense bombardment 
and almost complete destruction, the city surrendered in Novem- 
ber. The medieval structures of Dubrovnik were threatened by 
heavy Serbian bombardment, arousing international protest. Croa- 
tian blockades of YPA garrisons and ostensible Croatian atroci- 
ties were the pretext for continued YPA action at the same time 
as Croatia requested that the EC or the UN negotiate a settlement. 


De facto control of the YPA came into question in November, when 
MiloSevic and Tudjman both requested that a UN peacekeeping 
force separate the two sides, but continued fighting prevented such 
a force from being deployed. The failure of EC-arranged cease- 
fires between October and December brought speculation that the 
YPA was fighting independently for its own survival, beyond the 
control of either the federal government or Milosevic's Serbian 
government. YPA spokesmen admitted that some units were mov- 
ing outside the central command. Meanwhile, maintenance of the 
YPA effort put new stress on the already staggering national 

No agency of the federal government asserted influence over the 
struggle in Croatia at the end of 1991 . The State Presidency, nomi- 
nally in command of the YPA, lost its last vestige of ethnic balance 
when Croat Stipe MeSic resigned his position as president of the 
State Presidency in December, leaving the national executive in 
the hands of pro-Serbian delegates. In November one chamber of 
the Federal Assembly voted no confidence in Prime Minister Mar- 
kovic, and the second chamber threatened to force his resignation 
by following suit. Markovid resigned in December to protest the 
proposed 1992 "war budget," over 80 percent of which was desig- 
nated for the military. 

Thus, control of events moved even further from the center to 
the republics, which showed no inclination to cede autonomy for 
the sake of reestablishing a credible central government. Instead, 
distrust and mutual hostility grew as each jurisdiction protected 
its own interests in the new power vacuum. Slovenia and Croatia 
entered 1992 anticipating recognition of their independence by the 
EC, while Montenegro, the strongest backer of Serbian military 
action in Croatia, established an independent position in favor of 
a peaceful resolution of the national crisis. In October Montenegro 
split from Serbia by supporting an EC call for transformation of 
Yugoslavia into an association of sovereign republics. 

Croatia, meanwhile, had pressed hard for EC recognition as a 
key step toward gaining UN membership and full national status 
in possible UN-sponsored negotiations with the Serbs. In Decem- 
ber 1991 , the EC, under strong pressure from Germany, announced 
that it would recognize the independence of Slovenia, Croatia, and 
any other Yugoslav republic satisfying human rights and political 
requirements; the EC also officially named Serbia the aggressor 
in the Croatian conflict. Some EC members and the United States, 
however, feared that de jure Croatian independence would fur- 
ther inflame the conflict with Serbia or extend it into multiethnic 
Bosnia and Hercegovina. 


Milosevic reacted to the EC announcement by issuing charges 
that German expansionist ambitions were behind the EC position 
and that international recognition of Yugoslav republics would ex- 
pand the civil war. At the end of 1991, Serbia sought to consoli- 
date the advantages gained in recent months by setding Serbs in 
areas deserted by their Croatian populations, and plans were an- 
nounced to make Krajina a separate Yugoslav republic. 

At the beginning of 1992, most of Yugoslavia's major political 
and economic questions remained unanswered. One republic, 
Slovenia, seemingly had enough resources and a geopolitical posi- 
tion suitable to survival as an independent state. In 1991 it had 
already strengthened cultural and economic relations with West 
European nations, especially Austria and Germany, and had shed 
many of the remnants of the old Yugoslav centralized economic 
system — steps that promised rapid integration into Western mar- 
ket systems. In 1991 Slovenian officials, especially Foreign Secre- 
tary Dimitrij Rupel, traveled widely in the West to overcome 
international reluctance to recognize Slovenia. When initial Ser- 
bian resistance to its independence ended, Slovenia was complete- 
ly free of political obligations to the Yugoslav federation. 

Croatia, with its long history of nationalist independence move- 
ments and a relatively prosperous economy, remained entangled 
in the militant demands of its Serbian minority and ultranation- 
alist Croats, its economy disrupted by the Serbian occupation, de- 
struction of urban centers, and a massive refugee movement. A 
substantial radical nationalist faction threatened to overthrow Tudj- 
man if he reached a compromise peace agreement with Serbia. This 
meant that the policy-making alternatives of both Tudjman and 
MiloSevic were narrowed by the extremist sentiments they them- 
selves had aroused. Nevertheless, Croatia's hopes for true indepen- 
dence rested on international mediation in 1992 of its thorny 
territorial disputes with Serbia. Following the fifteenth cease-fire, 
imposed in December 1991, Serbia and the YPA agreed to allow 
a UN peacekeeping force to assume the role of protecting the Serbs 
in Croatia prior to final setdement and to remove all occupation 
forces from Croatian territory. The UN force headquarters was 
to be in Banja Luka, Bosnia, midway between the battle areas of 
Slavonia and the Adriatic coast. In January 1992, the main obsta- 
cle to introducing the UN force was continued military activity by 
irregular Serbian forces not controlled by the YPA or by any 

Serbia's resources were increasingly taxed by the war with Croa- 
tia, by the decrepit state of its economy, and by growing isolation 
in Europe. Increased separatist activity in Kosovo threatened to 


open a second front for the YPA, and opposition groups also grew 
stronger in Vojvodina. For these reasons, Serbia revised its goals 
late in 1991 to include domination of a reduced Yugoslav federa- 
tion. Serbian planners envisioned that the state would include most 
of the Serbian nationals in Croatia and Bosnia and Hercegovina, 
loyal ally Montenegro, and Macedonia. As 1991 ended, the Milo- 
sevic government faced increased pressure from democratic oppo- 
sition factions to end the war, reform the economy, and follow the 
other republics seeking the benefits of integration into the Euro- 
pean community. At that time, 50 percent of Serbs polled described 
war against Croatia as a mistake. Although the Milosevic govern- 
ment continued its anti-Croatian rhetoric, its conditions for a UN 
peacekeeping force had eased considerably by January 1992. 

Meanwhile, to avoid being absorbed in the new Serbian federa- 
tion, Macedonia and Bosnia and Hercegovina reaffirmed their 1991 
declarations of sovereignty by requesting recognition by the EC, 
which promised to use human rights and commitment to democracy 
as the standards for recognition. European support was especially 
important for Bosnia and Hercegovina, where an uneasy peace 
among the Serbs, Croats, and Muslim Slavs was threatened by 
proposals to unite all Serbs in a single nation. Although some fac- 
tions in Montenegro also showed discomfort at the prospect of Ser- 
bian domination, Montenegro did not leave the Serbian sphere by 
immediately seeking EC recognition. For all the actors, including 
Serbia, an important goal for 1992 was to cultivate a positive im- 
age and communication with the outside world. For the less power- 
ful, this course could confer the recognition that might protect them 
from being swallowed into a new Greater Serbia. In designing their 
new policies, all five non-Serbian republics entered 1992 under com- 
petent popularly elected leaders: Tudjman in Croatia, Izetbego- 
vic in Bosnia and Hercegovina, Kiro Gligorov in Macedonia, Bula- 
tovic in Montenegro, and Kuian in Slovenia. 

The Croatian conflict was the bloodiest war in Europe since 
World War II. Because the United States was far removed and 
the Soviet Union had ceased to exist, the military and political reso- 
lution of the conflict became an entirely European problem. The 
conflict accelerated a natural movement of the republics toward 
the economic stability of the EC and officially ended the era of 
Titoist nonalignment. Yugoslavia, a paragon of economic self- 
sufficiency twenty years before, had finally dissolved into units with 
sharply varying potential prosperity. Although these units had as 
little in common in 1992 as they had had in 1972, all of them, 


including Serbia, looked to Western Europe to help them salvage 
some of their postwar gains in the new and uncertain era that lay 
ahead in 1992. 

January 1, 1992 Glenn E. Curtis 



Chapter 1. Historical Setting 

Patriarchal Monastery near Pec, Kosovo; from thirteenth to 
eighteenth century, served as seat of administration for 
Serbian Orthodox Church 

Yugoslavia is the complex product of a complex 

history. The country's confusing and conflicting mosaic of peo- 
ples, languages, religions, and cultures took shape during centu- 
ries of turmoil after the collapse of the Roman Empire. By the early 
nineteenth century, two great empires, the Austrian and the Ot- 
toman, ruled all the modern-day Yugoslav lands except Mon- 
tenegro. As the century progressed, however, nationalist feelings 
awoke in the region's diverse peoples, the Turkish grip began to 
weaken, and Serbia won its independence. 

Discontent with the existing order brought calls for a union of 
South Slav peoples: Slovenian and Croatian thinkers proposed a 
South Slav kingdom within the Austrian Empire, while Serbian 
intellectuals envisaged a fully independent South Slav state. By the 
end of the century, the Ottoman Empire was disintegrating, and 
Austria-Hungary, Serbia, and other powers vied to gain a share 
of the empire's remaining Balkan lands. The conflict of those am- 
bitions unleashed the forces that destroyed the old European order 
in World War I. 

The idea of a South Slav kingdom flourished during World War 
I, but the collapse of Austria-Hungary eliminated the possibility 
of a South Slav kingdom under Austrian sponsorship. Fear of Italian 
domination drove some leaders of the Slovenes and Croats to unite 
with Serbia in a single kingdom under the Serbian dynasty in 1918. 
Political infighting and nationalist strife plagued this kingdom dur- 
ing the interwar years. When democratic institutions proved in- 
effectual, Serbian dictatorship took over, and the kingdom collapsed 
in violence after the Axis powers invaded in 1941. 

During World War II, communist-led Partisans (see Glossary) 
waged a victorious guerrilla struggle against foreign occupiers, 
Croatian fascists, and supporters of the prewar government. This 
struggle led to the rebirth of Yugoslavia as a socialist federation 
under communist rule on November 29, 1945. Under Josip Broz 
Tito, Yugoslav communists were faithful to orthodox Stalinism until 
a 1948 split with Moscow. At that time, a Soviet-led economic block- 
ade compelled the Yugoslavs to devise an economic system based 
on socialist self-management. To this system, the Yugoslavs added 
a nonaligned foreign policy and an idiosyncratic, one-party poli- 
tical system. This system maintained a semblance of unity during 
most of Tito's four decades of unquestioned rule. Soon after his 
death in 1980, however, long-standing differences again separated 

Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

the communist parties of the country's republics and provinces. 
Economic turmoil and the reemergence of an old conflict between 
the Serbs and the ethnic Albanian majority in Kosovo exacerbat- 
ed these differences, fueled a resurgence of nationalism, and para- 
lyzed the country's political decision-making mechanism. 

Pre-Slav History 

Ancient peoples inhabited the lands that now make up Yugo- 
slavia for millennia before Rome conquered the region in the first 
century A.D. Archeological findings reveal that during the 
Paleolithic period (ca. 200,000-8000 B.C.) man's ancestors hunt- 
ed and foraged in the mountains, valleys, and interior plains of 
today's Yugoslavia. In the Mesolithic period (8000-6000 B.C.), 
man expanded the use of tools and weapons and settled through- 
out the country. Farming came to the area at the dawn of the Neo- 
lithic period (6000-2800 B.C.) and spread throughout the region 
by 4000 B.C. Yugoslavia's Neolithic inhabitants planted cereal 
grains, raised livestock, fished, hunted, wove simple textiles, built 
houses of wood or mud, and made coarse pottery and implements. 

Man began working with pure copper in the region in the third 
millennium B.C. During the Bronze Age (2800-700 B.C.), the 
population grew, setdements multiplied, and craftsmen began cast- 
ing ornaments, tools, and weapons. After about 1450 B.C., smiths 
began working with locally mined gold and silver, horses and chari- 
ots became more common, and trade routes stretched to northern 
Europe and the Aegean. During the Iron Age (beginning 700 B.C.), 
trade flourished between the developing city-states of Italy and 
Greece and the region's first identifiable peoples: Illyrian-speaking 
tribes north of Lake Ohrid and west of the Vardar River (in present- 
day Macedonia), Thracian speakers in the area of modern Serbia, 
and the Veneti, who probably spoke an Italic tongue, in Istria and 
the Julian Alps (in present-day Slovenia and northwest Croatia). 

Greeks set up trading posts along the eastern Adriatic coast af- 
ter 600 B.C. and founded colonies there in the fourth century B.C. 
Greek influence proved ephemeral, however, and the native tribes 
remained herdsmen and warriors. Bardylis, a tribal chief of Illyr- 
ia (present-day northwest Yugoslavia), assumed control of much 
of Macedonia in 360 B.C. Philip II and his son, Alexander the 
Great, later united Macedonia and campaigned as far north as 
present-day Serbia. In the fourth century B.C., invading Celts 
forced the Illyrians southward from the northern Adriatic coast, 
and over several centuries a mixed Celtic-Illyrian culture arose in 
much of modern Slovenia, Croatia, and Serbia, producing wheel- 
turned pottery, jewelry, and iron tools. 


Historical Setting 

In the third century B.C., Rome conquered the west Adriatic 
coast and began exerting influence on the opposite shore. Greek 
allegations that the Illyrians were disrupting commerce and plun- 
dering coastal towns helped precipitate a Roman punitive strike 
in 229 B.C., and in subsequent campaigns Rome forced Illyrian 
rulers to pay tribute. Roman armies often crossed Illyria during 
the Roman-Macedonian wars, and in 168 B.C. Rome conquered 
the Illyrians and destroyed the Macedonia of Philip and Alexander. 
For many years, the Dinaric Alps sheltered resistance forces, but 
Roman dominance increased. In 35 B.C., the emperor Octavian 
conquered the coastal region and seized inland Celtic and Illyrian 
strongholds; in A.D. 9, Tiberius consolidated Roman control of 
the western Balkan Peninsula; and by A.D. 14, Rome had sub- 
jugated the Celts in what is now Serbia. The Romans brought order 
to the region, and their inventive genius produced lasting monu- 
ments. But Rome's most significant legacy to the region was the 
separation of the empire's Byzantine and Roman spheres (the 
Eastern and Western Roman Empires, respectively), which creat- 
ed a cultural chasm that would divide East from West, Eastern Or- 
thodox from Roman Catholic, and Serb from Croat and Slovene. 

Over the next 500 years, Latin culture permeated the region. 
The Romans divided their western Balkan territories into separate 
provinces. New roads linked fortresses, mines, and trading towns. 
The Romans introduced viticulture in Dalmatia, instituted slav- 
ery, and dug new mines. Agriculture thrived in the Danube Ba- 
sin, and towns throughout the country blossomed into urban areas 
with forums, temples, water systems, coliseums, and public baths. 
In addition to gods of the Greco-Roman pantheon, Roman legion- 
naires brought the mystic cult of Mithras from Persia. The Ro- 
man army also recruited natives of the conquered regions, and five 
sons of Illyrian peasants rose through the ranks to become emperor. 
The Illyrian, Celtic, and Thracian languages all eventually died 
out, but the centuries of Roman domination failed to create cul- 
tural uniformity. 

Internal strife and an economic crisis rocked the empire in the 
third century A.D., and two ethnic Illyrian emperors, born in areas 
now in Yugoslavia, took decisive steps to prolong the empire's life. 
Emperor Diocletian, born in Dalmatia, established strong central 
control and a bureaucracy, abolished the last Roman republican 
institutions, and persecuted Christians in an attempt to make them 
identify more with the state than the church. Emperor Constan- 
tine, born near NiS, reunited the empire after years of turmoil, 
established dynastic succession, founded a new capital at Byzanti- 
um in A.D. 330, and legalized Christianity. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

In A.D. 395, the sons of Emperor Theodosius split the empire 
into eastern and western halves. The division, which became a per- 
manent feature of the European cultural landscape, separated Greek 
Constantinople (as Byzantium was renamed in A.D. 330) from 
Latin Rome and eventually the Eastern Orthodox and Roman 
Catholic churches. It likewise separated the lands in what is now 
Yugoslavia, exercising a critical influence on the Serbs and Croats. 
Economic and administrative breakdown soon softened the em- 
pire's defenses, especially in the western half, and barbarian tribes 
began to attack. In the fourth century, the Goths sacked Roman 
fortresses along the Danube River, and in A.D. 448 the Huns 
ravaged Sirmium (now Sremska Mitrovica northwest of present- 
day Belgrade), Singidunum (now Belgrade), and Emona (now 
Ljubljana). The Ostrogoths had conquered Dalmatia and other 
provinces by 493. Emperor Justinian drove the invaders out in the 
sixth century, but the defenses of the empire proved inadequate 
to maintain this gain. 

Slavic tribesmen poured across the empire's borders during the 
fifth and sixth centuries. The Slavs, characteristically sedentary 
farming and livestock-raising tribes, spoke an Indo-European lan- 
guage and organized themselves into clans ruled by a council of 
family chiefs. All land and significant wealth was held in common. 
In the sixth century, the Slavs allied with the more powerful Avars 
to plunder the Danube Basin. Together, they erased almost all trace 
of Christian life in Dalmatia and the northwestern parts of present- 
day Yugoslavia. In A.D. 626, these tribes surrounded Constan- 
tinople itself. The Avar incursions proved key to the subsequent 
development of Yugoslavia because they immediately preceded, 
and may have precipitated, the arrival of the Serbs and Croats. 

Histories of the Yugoslav Peoples to World War I 

Before Yugoslavia became a nation, the Slovenes, Croats, Serbs, 
Montenegrins, Bosnians, Macedonians, and Albanians had vir- 
tually independent histories. The Slovenes struggled to define and 
defend their cultural identity for a millennium, first under the 
Frankish Kingdom and then under the Austrian Empire. The 
Croats of Croatia and Slavonia enjoyed a brief independence be- 
fore falling under Hungarian and Austrian domination; and the 
Croats in Dalmatia struggled under Byzantine, Hungarian, Vene- 
tian, French, and Austrian rule. The Serbs, who briefly rivaled 
the Byzantine Empire in medieval times, suffered 500 years of Tur- 
kish domination before winning independence in the nineteenth 
century. Their Montenegrin kinsmen lived for centuries under a 
dynasty of bishop-priests and savagely defended their mountain 

Palace of Roman Emperor Diocletian, Split 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

homeland against foreign aggressors. Bosnians turned to heresy 
to protect themselves from external political and religious pressure, 
converted in great numbers to Islam after the Turks invaded, and 
became a nuisance to Austria-Hungary in the late nineteenth cen- 
tury. A hodgepodge of ethnic groups peopled Macedonia over the 
centuries. As the power of the Ottoman Empire waned, the region 
was contested among the Serbs, Bulgars, Greeks, and Albanians 
and also was a pawn among the major European powers. Finally, 
the disputed Kosovo region, with an Albanian majority and 
medieval Serbian tradition, remained an Ottoman backwater un- 
til after the Balkan wars of the early twentieth century. 

The Slovenes 

The Slovenes, a Slavic people, migrated southwestward across 
present-day Romania in about the sixth century A.D. and settled 
in the Julian Alps. They apparently enjoyed broad autonomy in 
the seventh century, after escaping Avar domination. The Franks 
overran the Slovenes in the late eighth century; during the rule 
of the Frankish king Charlemagne, German nobles began enserf- 
ing the Slovenes, and German missionaries baptized them in the 
Latin rite. Emperor Otto I incorporated most of the Slovenian lands 
into the duchy of Carantania in 952; later rulers split the duchy 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

into Carinthia, Carniola, and Styria. In 1278 the Slovenian lands 
fell to the Austrian Habsburgs, who controlled them until 1918. 

Turkish marauders plagued Carinthia, Carniola, and Styria in 
the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The Slovenes abandoned 
lands vulnerable to attack and raised bulwarks around churches 
to protect themselves. The Turkish conquest of the Balkans and 
Hungary also disrupted the Slovenian economy; to compensate, 
the nobles stiffened feudal obligations and crushed peasant revolts 
between 1478 and 1573. 

In the tumult of the sixteenth century, German nobles in the 
three Slovenian provinces clamored for greater autonomy, em- 
braced the Protestant Reformation, and drew many Slovenes away 
from the Catholic Church. The Reformation sparked the Slovenes' 
first cultural awakening. In 1550 Primoz Trubar published the first 
Slovenian-language book, a catechism. He later produced a trans- 
lation of the New Testament and printed other Slovenian religious 
books in the Latin and Cyrillic (see Glossary) scripts. Ljubljana 
had a printing press by 1575, but the authorities closed it when 
Jurij Dalmatin tried to publish a translation of the Bible. Sloveni- 
an publishing activity then shifted to Germany, where Dalmatin 
published his Bible with a glossary enabling Croats to read it. The 
Counterreformation accelerated in Austria in the early seventeenth 
century, and in 1628 the emperor forced Protestants to choose be- 
tween Catholicism and exile. Jesuit counterreformers burned Slove- 
nian Protestant literature and took other measures that retarded 
diversification of Slovenian culture but failed to stifle it completely. 
Some Jesuits preached and composed hymns in Slovenian, opened 
schools, taught from an expurgated edition of Dalmatin' s Bible, 
and sent Slovenian students to Austrian universities. Nonetheless, 
Slovenian remained a peasant idiom, and the higher social classes 
spoke German or Italian. 

Slovenian economic links with Germany and Italy strengthened 
in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and living conditions 
improved. The Vienna-Trieste trade route crossed through the 
Slovenian cities of Maribor and Ljubljana. Agricultural products 
and raw materials were exported over this trade route, and exotic 
goods were imported from the East. Despite his campaign to Ger- 
manize the Austrian Empire, Emperor Joseph II (1780-90) encour- 
aged translation of educational materials into Slovenian. He also 
distributed monastic lands, workshops, and fisheries to Slovenian 

By the end of the eighteenth century, Slovenian prosperity had 
yielded a self-reliant middle class that sent its sons to study in Vienna 
and Paris. They returned steeped in the views of the Enlightenment 


Historical Setting 

and bent on rational examination of their own culture. Slovenian 
intellectuals began writing in Slovenian rather than German, and 
they introduced the idea of a Slovenian nation. Between 1788 and 
1791, Anton Linhart wrote an antifeudal, anticlerical history of 
the Slovenes that depicted them for the first time as a single peo- 
ple. In 1 797 Father Valentin Vodnik composed Slovenian poetry 
and founded the first Slovenian newspaper. 

After several victories over Austria, Napoleon incorporated the 
Slovenian provinces and other Austrian lands into the French Em- 
pire as the Illyrian Provinces, with the capital at Ljubljana. Despite 
unpopular new tax and conscription laws, Slovenian intellectuals 
welcomed the French, who issued proclamations in Slovenian as 
well as in German and French, built roads, reformed the govern- 
ment, appointed Slovenes to official posts, and opened Slovenian- 
language schools for both sexes. France strengthened the national 
self-awareness of the Slovenes and other South Slavs in the Illyri- 
an Provinces by promoting the concept of Illyria as a common link 
among Slovenes, Croats, and Serbs. This concept later evolved into 
the idea of uniting the South Slavs in an independent state. 

Austria reasserted its dominance of the Slovenes in 1813 and 
rescinded the French reforms. Slovenian intellectuals, however, con- 
tinued refining the Slovenian language and national identity, while 
Austria strove to confine their activities to the cultural sphere. The 
pro- Austrian philologist and linguist Jernej Kopitar pioneered com- 
parative Slavic linguistics and created a Slovenian literary language 
from numerous local dialects, hoping to strengthen the monarchy 
and Catholicism. France PreSeren, perhaps the greatest Sloveni- 
an poet, worked to transform the Slovenian peasant idiom into a 
refined language. In the 1840s, Slovenian audiences heard the first 
official public speech delivered in Slovenian and the first Sloveni- 
an songs sung in a theater. In 1843 Janez Blajvajs founded a prac- 
tical journal for peasants and craftsmen that carried the cultural 
movement beyond the upper class to the masses. 

Revolution convulsed Europe in 1848, and demonstrators in cities 
throughout the Austrian Empire called for constitutional monarchy. 
Crowds in Ljubljana cheered the apparent downfall of the old order. 
Intellectual groups drafted the Slovenes' first political platforms. 
Some programs called for an autonomous "Unified Slovenia" within 
the empire; others supported unification of the South Slavs into an 
Illyrian state linked with Austria or Germany. The 1848 revolutions 
swept away serfdom in the Austrian Empire, but the political move- 
ment of the Slovenes made litde headway before the Austrian govern- 
ment regained control and imposed absolutist rule. In the 1850s 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and early 1860s, the campaigns of Slovenian leaders were again 
restricted to the cultural sphere. 

Military defeats in 1859 and 1866 exposed the internal weak- 
ness of the Austrian Empire, and in 1867 Austria attempted to 
revitalize itself by joining with Hungary to form the Dual Monar- 
chy (see Glossary). In the late 1860s, Slovenian leaders, convinced 
of the empire's imminent collapse, resurrected the dream of a united 
Slovenia. They staged mass rallies, agitated for use of the Sloven- 
ian language in schools and local government, and sought support 
from the Croats and other South Slavs. When the threat to the 
survival of Austria-Hungary waned after 1871, the Slovenes with- 
drew their support for a South Slav union and adapted themselves 
to political life within the Dual Monarchy. The conservative coa- 
lition that ruled Austria from 1879 to 1893 made minor cultural 
concessions to the Slovenes, including use of Slovenian in schools 
and local administration in some areas. Slovenes controlled the local 
assembly of Carniola after 1883, and Ljubljana had a Slovenian 
mayor after 1888. 

In 1907 Austria instituted universal male suffrage, which en- 
couraged Slovenian politicians that the empire would eventually 
fulfill the Slovenes' national aspirations. In October 1908, Aus- 
tria annexed Bosnia and Hercegovina. The annexation sharpened 
the national self-awareness of the South Slavs and generated rumors 
of impending war with Serbia. Troop mobilization began. How- 
ever, the main Slovenian parties welcomed the annexation as a step 
toward a union of the empire's South Slavs. Tensions eased after 
six months, but Austria-Hungary, fearing pan-Slavism (see Glos- 
sary), conducted witch hunts for disloyal Slavs. In 1909 Slovenian 
party leaders criticized Vienna for mistreating the Slavs, but the 
possibilities of a South Slav union within the empire declined. De- 
mands rose for creation of an independent South Slav nation, and 
a socialist conference in Ljubljana even called for the cultural unifi- 
cation of all South Slavs. Such appeals began a heated debate on 
the implications of unification for Slovenian culture. 

The Croats and Their Territories 

Most historians believe that the Croats are a purely Slavic peo- 
ple who probably migrated to the Balkans from present-day 
Ukraine. A newer theory, however, holds that the original Croats 
were nomadic Sarmatians who roamed Central Asia, migrated onto 
the steppes around 200 B.C., and rode into Europe near the end 
of the fourth century A.D., possibly together with the Huns. The 
Sarmatian Croats, the theory holds, conquered the Slavs of north- 
ern Bohemia and southern Poland and formed a small state called 


Historical Setting 

White Croatia near present-day Krakow. The Croats then sup- 
posedly mingled with their more numerous Slavic subjects and 
adopted the Slavic language, while the subjects assumed the tribal 
name "Croat." 

A tenth-century Byzantine source reports that in the seventh cen- 
tury Emperor Heraclius enlisted the Croats to expel the Avars from 
Byzantine lands. The Croats overran the Avars and Slavs in Dalma- 
tia around 630 and then drove the Avars from today's Slovenia 
and other areas. In the eighth century, the Croats lived under loose 
Byzantine rule, and Christianity and Latin culture recovered in 
the coastal cities. The Franks subjugated most of the Croats in the 
eighth century and sent missionaries to baptize them in the Latin 
rite, but the Byzantine Empire continued to rule Dalmatia. 

Croatia emerged as an independent nation in 924. Tomislav 
(910-ca. 928), a tribal leader, established himself as the first king 
of Croatia, ruling a domain that stretched eastward to the Danube. 
Croatia and Venice struggled to dominate Dalmatia as the power 
of Byzantium faded, and for a time the Dalmatians paid the Croats 
tribute to ensure safe passage for their galleys through the Adriatic. 
After the Great Schism of 1054 split the Roman and Byzantine 
churches, Normans (probably with papal support) besieged Byzan- 
tine cities in Dalmatia. In 1075 a papal legate crowned Dmitrije 
Zvonimir (1076-89) king of Croatia. 

A faction of nobles contesting the succession after the death of 
Zvonimir offered the Croatian throne to King Laszlo I of Hun- 
gary. In 1091 Laszlo accepted, and in 1094 he founded the Zagreb 
bishopric, which later became the ecclesiastical center of Croatia. 
Another Hungarian king, Kalman, crushed opposition after the 
death of Laszlo and won the crown of Dalmatia and Croatia in 
1 102. The crowning of Kalman forged a link between the Croa- 
tian and Hungarian crowns that lasted until the end of World War 
I. Croats have maintained for centuries that Croatia remained a 
sovereign state despite the voluntary union of the two crowns, but 
Hungarians claim that Hungary annexed Croatia outright in 1 102. 
In either case, Hungarian culture permeated Croatia, the Croatian- 
Hungarian border shifted often, and at times Hungary treated 
Croatia as a vassal state. Croatia, however, had its own local gover- 
nor, or ban; a privileged landowning nobility; and an assembly of 
nobles, the Sabor. 

The joining of the Croatian and Hungarian crowns automati- 
cally made Hungary and Venice rivals for domination of Dalma- 
tia. Hungary sought access to the sea, while Venice wished to secure 
its trade routes to the eastern Mediterranean and to use Dalmatian 
timber for shipbuilding. Between 1115 and 1420, the two powers 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

waged twenty-one wars for control of the region, and Dalmatian 
cities changed hands repeatedly. Serbia and Bosnia also competed 
for Dalmatia. Serbia seized the coast south of the Gulf of Kotor 
on the southern Adriatic around 1196 and held it for 150 years; 
Bosnia dominated central Dalmatia during the late fourteenth cen- 
tury. Dalmatian cities struggled to remain autonomous by play- 
ing off one power against the others. Most successful in this strategy 
was Dubrovnik, whose riches and influence at times rivaled those 
of Venice. In the fourteenth century, Dubrovnik became the first 
Christian power to establish treaty relations with the Ottoman Em- 
pire, which was then advancing across the Balkans. Dubrovnik 
prospered by mediating between Europe and the new Ottoman 
provinces in Europe and by exporting precious metals, raw materi- 
als, agricultural goods, and slaves. After centuries as the only free 
South Slav political entity, the city waned in power following a se- 
vere earthquake in 1667. 

In 1 409 Ladislas of Naples, a claimant to the throne of Hun- 
gary, sold Venice his rights to Dalmatia. By 1420 Venice controlled 
virtually all of Dalmatia except Dubrovnik. The Venetians made 
Dalmatia their poorest, most backward province: they reduced 
Dalmatian local autonomy, cut the forests, and stifled industry. 
Venice also restricted education, so that Zadar, the administrative 
center of Dalmatia, lacked even a printing press until 1796. Despite 
centuries of struggle for dominance of the region and exploitation 
by Venice, Dalmatia produced several first-rate artists and intellec- 
tuals, including the sculptor Radovan, architect and sculptor Juraj 
Dalmatinac, writer Ivan Gundulic, and scientist Rudjer Boskovic. 

Ottoman armies overran all of Croatia south of the Sava River 
in the early sixteenth century and slaughtered a weak Hungarian 
force at the Battle of Mohacs in 1526. Budawas captured in 1541, 
and then Turkish marauders advanced toward Austria. After Mo- 
hacs, Hungarian and Croatian nobles elected the Habsburg Fer- 
dinand I of Austria king of Hungary and Croatia. To tighten its 
grip on Croatia and solidify its defenses, Austria restricted the pow- 
ers of the Sabor, established a military border across Croatia, and 
recruited Germans, Hungarians, and Serbs and other Slavs to serve 
as peasant border guards (see fig. 2). This practice was the basis 
for the ethnic patchwork that survives today in Croatia, Slavonia, 
and Vojvodina. Austria assumed direct control of the border lands 
and gave local independence and land to families who agreed to 
settle and guard those lands. The area that they settled became 
known as the Military Frontier Province. Orthodox border fami- 
lies also won freedom of worship, which drew stiff opposition from 
the Roman Catholic Church. 



Historical Setting 

Turkish inroads in Croatia and Austria also triggered price in- 
creases for agricultural goods, and opportunistic landowners be- 
gan demanding payment in kind, rather than cash, from serfs. 
Rural discontent exploded in 1 573 when Matija Gubec led an or- 
ganized peasant rebellion that spread quickly before panic-stricken 
nobles were able to quell it. 

Religious ferment in Europe affected Croatian culture in the six- 
teenth century. Many Croatian and Dalmatian nobles embraced 
the Protestant Reformation in the mid-sixteenth century, and in 
1562 Stipan Konzul and Anton Dalmatin published the first Croa- 
tian Bible. The Counterreformation began in Croatia and Dalmatia 
in the early seventeenth century, and the most powerful Protes- 
tant noblemen soon reconverted. In 1609 the Sabor voted to allow 
only the Catholic faith in Croatia. The Counterreformation en- 
hanced the cultural development of Croatia. Jesuits founded schools 
and published grammars, a dictionary, and religious books that 
helped shape the Croatian literary language. Franciscans preached 
the Counterreformation in Ottoman-held regions. 

Western forces routed a Turkish army besieging Vienna in 1683 
and then began driving the Turks from Europe. In the 1699 Treaty 
of Karlowitz, the Turks ceded most of Hungary, Croatia, and 
Slavonia to Austria, and by 1718 they no longer threatened Dalma- 
tia. During the Western advance, Austria expanded its military 
border, and thousands of Serbs fleeing Turkish oppression setded 
as border guards in Slavonia and southern Hungary. As the Turk- 
ish threat waned, Croatian nobles demanded reincorporation of 
the military border into Croatia. Austria, which used the guards 
as an inexpensive standing military force, rejected these demands, 
and the guards themselves opposed abrogation of their special 

From 1780 to 1790, Joseph II of Austria introduced reforms that 
exposed ethnic and linguistic rivalries. Among other things, Joseph 
brought the empire under strict central control and decreed that 
German replace Latin as the official language of the empire. This 
decree enraged the Hungarians, who rejected Germanization and 
fought to make their language, Magyar, the official language of 
Hungary. The Croats, fearing both Germanization and Magyari- 
zation, defended Latin. In 1790, when Joseph died, Hungary was 
on the verge of rebellion. Joseph's successor, Leopold II, aban- 
doned centralization and Germanization when he signed laws en- 
suring Hungary's status as an independent kingdom under an 
Austrian king. The next Austrian emperor, Francis I, stifled Hun- 
garian political development for almost four decades, during which 
Magyarization was not an issue. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Source: Based on information from United Kingdom, Admiralty, Naval Intelligence Di- 
vision, Yugoslavia, 2: History, Peoples, and Administration, London, 1944, 20. 

Figure 2. Military Frontier Province Between the Habsburg and Ottoman 
Empires, ca. 1600-1800 

Venice repulsed Ottoman attacks on Dalmatia for several cen- 
turies after the Battle of Mohacs, and it helped to push the Turks 
from the coastal area after 1693. But by the late eighteenth centu- 
ry, trade routes had shifted, Venice had declined, and Dalmatian 
ships stood idle. Napoleon ended the Venetian Republic and defeat- 
ed Austria; he then incorporated Dalmatia, Dubrovnik, and western 
Croatia as the French Illyrian Provinces. France stimulated agricul- 
ture and commerce in the provinces, fought piracy, enhanced the 
status of the Orthodox population, and stirred a Croatian national 
awakening. In 1814 the military border and Dalmatia returned to 
Austria when Napoleon was defeated; Hungary regained Croatia 
and Slavonia. In 1816 Austria transformed most of the Illyrian 
Provinces into the Kingdom of Illyria, an administrative unit de- 
signed to counterbalance radical Hungarian nationalism and co-opt 
nascent movements for union of the South Slavs. Austria kept Dal- 
matia for itself and reduced the privileges of the Dalmatian nobles. 

The Croatian-Hungarian language conflict reemerged in the 
1830s as Hungarian reformers grew more critical of Austrian 


Historical Setting 

domination. French-educated Croatian leaders, fearing Hungari- 
an linguistic and political domination, began promoting the Croa- 
tian language and formation of a Slavic kingdom within the 
Austrian Empire. In 1832, for the first time in centuries, a Croa- 
tian noble addressed the Sabor in Croatian. With tacit Austrian 
approval, Ljudevit Gaj, a journalist and linguist, promoted a South 
Slavic literary language, devised a Latin-based script, and in 1836 
founded an anti-Hungarian journal that called for Illyrian cultur- 
al and political unity. Hungary feared the Illyrian movement and 
banned even public utterance of the word "Illyria." In 1843 the 
Hungarian assembly voted to make Magyar the official language 
of Hungary and Slavonia and eventually to make it the official lan- 
guage in Hungarian-Croatian relations. Croats called the law an 
infringement on their autonomy, saturated Vienna with petitions 
for separation from Hungary, and returned to Budapest all docu- 
ments sent them in Hungarian. 

Hungary rose against Austria during the revolutions that swept 
Europe in 1848. The Croats, rightly fearing Hungarian chauvinism 
and expecting union of Croatia, Slavonia, and Dalmatia, sided with 
Austria. Ban Josip JelaCic led an army that attacked the Hungari- 
an revolutionary forces. His units soon withdrew, but Russian 
troops invaded Hungary to crush the revolution. Despite their 
loyalty to Austria, the Croats received only the abolition of serf- 
dom. Rather than uniting the Slavic regions as promised, the em- 
peror suspended the constitution and introduced absolutist rule and 
Germanization . 

Austria ended absolutist rule in 1860, and a military defeat in 
1866 brought the empire to the brink of collapse. In 1867 Emperor 
Franz Joseph entered the Dual Monarchy with Hungary, uniting 
the two states under a single crown. Conflicting interests kept 
Austria-Hungary from uniting the South Slavs: Croatia and Slavo- 
nia fell under Hungarian control, while Austria retained Dalma- 
tia. In 1868 a Sabor dominated by pro-Hungarian deputies adopted 
the Nagodba, or compromised, which affirmed that Hungary and 
Croatia constituted distinct political units within the empire. Croatia 
obtained autonomy in internal matters, but finance and other 
Croatian-Hungarian or Austro-Hungarian concerns required ap- 
proval from Budapest and Vienna. Hungarian leaders considered 
that the Nagodba provided ample home rule for Croatia, but Croa- 
tia opposed it strongly. A subsequent election law guaranteed pro- 
Hungarian landowners and officials a majority in the Sabor and 
increased Croatian hatred for Hungarian domination. Croatian 
members of the Hungarian assembly then resorted to obstructionism 
to enhance their meager influence. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

After 1868 the Croatian leadership was divided between advo- 
cates of a South Slav union and nationalists favoring a Greater 
Croatia; a bitter rivalry developed between the Croats and Serbs. 
Bishop Josip Strossmayer dominated the Croatian South Slav move- 
ment and supported liturgical concessions to help reduce the reli- 
gious differences dividing Croats and Serbs. In pursuit of a South 
Slav cultural union, he founded the South Slav Academy of Arts 
and Sciences in 1867 and the University of Zagreb in 1874. Ante 
Starcevic opposed Strossmayer, pressed for a Greater Croatia, and 
founded an extreme nationalist party. In 1881 Austria-Hungary 
reincorporated the military border into Croatia, increasing the num- 
ber of ethnic Serbs in Croatia to about 25 percent of its 2.6 million 
population. The change raised ethnic tensions. The Croats' ill will 
toward Hungary and ethnic Serbs deepened under Ban Karoly 
Khuen-Hedervary (1883-1903), who ignored the Nagodba and ex- 
ploited the Croatian-Serbian rivalry to promote Magyarization. 
In 1903 Hungary rejected Croatian demands for financial indepen- 
dence, quelled demonstrations, and suppressed the Croatian press. 
After 1903 moderate Croats and ethnic Serbs found common 
ground, and by 1908 a Croatian-Serbian coalition won a majority 
in the Sabor and condemned Austria's annexation of Bosnia and 
Hercegovina. A new ban, hoping to split the coalition, brought 
bogus treason charges against ethnic Serbian leaders in Croatia; 
the subsequent trials scandalized Europe and strengthened the tenu- 
ous Croatian-Serbian coalition. 

The Serbs and Serbia, Vojvodina, and Montenegro 

Like the Croats, the Serbs are believed to be a purely Slavic 
people who originated in Ukraine. Some scholars now argue that 
the original Serbs were Central Asian Sarmatian nomads who en- 
tered Europe with the Huns in the fourth century A.D. The the- 
ory proposes that the Sarmatian Serbs settled in a land designated 
as White Serbia, in what is now Saxony and western Poland. The 
Sarmatian Serbs, it is argued, intermarried with the indigenous 
Slavs of the region, adopted their language, and transferred their 
name to the Slavs. Byzantine sources report that some Serbs migrat- 
ed southward in the seventh century A.D. and eventually setded in 
the lands that now make up southern Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, 
and Bosnia and Hercegovina. Rival chiefs, or zupani, vied to con- 
trol the Serbs for five centuries after the migration. Zupan Vlastimir 
formed a Serbian principality under the Byzantines around 850, 
and the Serbs soon converted to Eastern-rite Christianity. The Serbs 
had two political centers in the eleventh century: Zeta, in the 


Historical Setting 

mountains of present-day Montenegro, and RaSka, located in 
modern southwestern Serbia. 

The zupan of RaSka, Stefan I Nemanja (1159-96), threw off 
Byzantine domination and laid the foundation for medieval Ser- 
bia by conquering Zeta and part of southern Dalmatia. His son 
and successor, Stefan II Nemanja (1196-1228), transformed Ser- 
bia into a stable state, friendly with Rome but with religious loyalty 
to Constantinople. In 1218 Pope Honorius III recognized Serbi- 
an political independence and crowned Stefan II. The writings of 
Stefan II and his brother (later canonized as St. Sava) were the 
first works of Serbian literature. 

Later kings in the Nemanja line overcame internal rivalries and 
pressure from Bulgaria and Constantinople. They also rejected 
papal invitations to link the Serbian Orthodox Church with Rome, 
and they ruled their country through a golden age. Serbia expanded 
its economy, and Dalmatian merchants marketed Serbian goods 
throughout Europe and the Levant. The Nemanja Dynasty left to 
Serbia masterpieces of religious art combining Western, Byzan- 
tine, and local styles. 

Serbia dominated the Balkans under Stefan DuSan (1331-55), 
who conquered lands extending from Belgrade to present-day 
southern Greece. He proclaimed himself emperor, elevated the 
archbishop of Pec to the level of patriarch, and wrote a new legal 
code combining Byzantine law with Serbian customs. DuSan had 
ambitions toward a weakened Byzantine Empire, but the Byzan- 
tine emperor suspected his intentions and summoned the Turks 
to restrain him. DuSan repelled assaults in 1345 and 1349 but was 
defeated in 1352. He then offered to lead an alliance against the 
Turks and recognize the pope, but those gambits also were rejected. 

Rival nobles divided Serbia after the death of DuSan in 1355, 
and many switched loyalty to the sultan after the last Nemanja died 
in 1371 . The most powerful Serbian prince, Lazar Hrebeljanovic, 
raised a multinational force to engage the Turks in the Battle of 
Kosovo Polje on St. Vitus Day in 1389. The Turks barely defeat- 
ed Lazar, and both he and the sultan were killed. The defeat did 
not bring immediate Turkish occupation of Serbia, but during the 
centuries of Turkish domination that followed, the Serbs endowed 
the battle with myths of honor and heroism that helped them 
preserve their dignity and sense of nationhood. Serbs still recite 
epic poems and sing songs about the nobles who fell at Kosovo 
Polje; the anniversary of the battle is the Serbian national holi- 
day, Vidovdan (St. Vitus Day), June 28. 

Civil war in the Ottoman Empire saved Serbia in the early fifteenth 
century, but the Turks soon reunited their forces to conquer the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

last Serbian stronghold at Smederjevo in 1459 and subjugate the 
whole country. Serbs fled to Hungary, Montenegro, Croatia, Dalma- 
tia, and Bosnia, and some formed oudaw bands. In response to the 
activities of the latter, the Turks disinterred and burned the remains 
of St. Sava. By the sixteenth century, southern Hungary had a siz- 
able Serbian population that remained after the Turks conquered 
the region in 1526. Montenegro, which emerged as an indepen- 
dent principality after the death of DuSan, waged continual guer- 
rilla war on the Turks and never was conquered. But the Turkish 
threat did force Prince Ivan of Montenegro to move his capital high 
into the mountains. There, he founded a monastery and set up 
a printing press. In 1516 Montenegro became a theocratic state. 

Social and economic life in Serbia changed radically under the 
absolute rule of the Turkish sultan. The Turks split Serbia among 
several provinces, conscripted Serbian boys into their elite forces, 
exterminated Serbian nobles, and deprived the Serbs of contact 
with the West as the Renaissance was beginning. The Turks used 
the Orthodox Church to mediate between the state and the peasan- 
try, but they expropriated most church lands. Poorly trained Ser- 
bian priests strove to maintain the decaying national identity. In 
1459 the sultan subordinated the Serbian church to the Greek patri- 
arch, but the Serbs hated Greek dominance of their church, and 
in 1557 Grand Vizier Mehmed Pasha Sokolovic, a Serb who had 
been inducted into the Turkish army as a boy, persuaded the sul- 
tan to restore autonomy to the Serbian church. Turkish maltreat- 
ment and exploitation grew in Serbia after the sixteenth century, 
and more Serbs fled to become mountain oudaws, or hajduci. Epic 
songs of the hajduci kept alive the Serbs' memory of the glorious 
independence of the past. 

From 1684 to 1689, Christian forces attempted to push the Turks 
from the Balkans, inciting the Serbs to rebel against their Turkish 
overlords. The offensive and the rebellion ultimately failed, exposing 
the Serbs south of the Sava River to the revenge of the Turks. Fear- 
ing Turkish reprisals, the Serbian patriarch Arsenije III Carno- 
jevic emigrated in 1690 to Austrian-ruled southern Hungary with 
as many as 36,000 families. The Austrian emperor promised these 
people religious freedom and the right to elect their own vojvoda, 
or military governor, and incorporated much of the region where 
they settled, later known as Vojvodina, into the military border. 
The refugees founded new monasteries that became cultural centers. 
In Montenegro Danilo I Petrovic of NjegoS (1696-1737) became 
bishop-prince and instituted the succession of the Petrovic- NjegoS 
family. His efforts to unify Montenegro triggered a massacre of 
Muslims in 1702 and subsequent reprisals. 


Historical Setting 

Austrian forces took Serbian regions south of the Sava from the 
Ottoman Empire in 1718, but Jesuits following the army prosely- 
tized so heavily that the Serbs came to hate the Austrians as well 
as the Turks. In the eighteenth century, the Turkish economy and 
social fabric began deteriorating, and the Serbs who remained under 
the Ottoman Empire suffered attacks from bands of soldiers. Cor- 
rupt Greek priests who had replaced Serbian clergy at the sultan's 
direction also took advantage of the Serbs. The Serbs in southern 
Hungary fared much better. They farmed prosperously in the fer- 
tile Danube Plain. A Serbian middle class arose, and the monas- 
teries trained scholars and writers who inspired national pride, even 
among illiterate Serbs. 

The eighteenth century brought Russian involvement in Euro- 
pean events, particularly in competition with Austria for the spoils 
of the Turkish collapse. The Orthodox Serbs looked to the tsar for 
support, and Russia forged ties with Montenegro and the Serbian 
church in southern Hungary. In 1774 Russia won the diplomatic 
right to protect Christian subjects of the Turks; later it used this 
right as a pretext to intervene in Turkish affairs. When Russia and 
Austria fought another war with the Ottoman Empire in 1 787 and 
1788, Serbs fought guerrilla battles against the Turks. Austria aban- 
doned the campaign, and the Serbs, in 1791. To secure their front- 
ier, the Turks granted their Serbian subjects a measure of autonomy 
and formed a Serbian militia. Montenegro expanded in the late 
eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Bishop-Prince Petar I 
NjegoS (1782-1830) convinced the sultan to declare that the Mon- 
tenegrins had never been Turkish subjects, and Montenegro re- 
mained independent through the nineteenth century. 

In 1804 renegade Turkish soldiers in Belgrade murdered Serbi- 
an leaders, triggering a popular uprising under Karadjordje ("Black 
George") Petrovic, founder of the Karadjordjevic Dynasty. Rus- 
sia supported the Serbs, and the cultan granted them limited au- 
tonomy (see fig. 3). But internal discord weakened the government 
of Karadjordje, and the French invasion of Russia in 1812 prevented 
the tsar from protecting the Serbs. In 1813 the Turks attacked rebel 
areas. Karadjordje fled to Hungary; then Turkish, Bosnian, and 
Albanian troops plundered Serbian villages. The atrocities sparked 
a second Serbian uprising in 1815 that won autonomy under Turk- 
ish control for some regions. The corrupt rebel leader MiloS 
Obrenovic (1817-39) had Karadjordje murdered and his head sent 
to the sultan to signal Serbian loyalty. 

In 1830 the Ottoman Empire recognized Serbia as a principali- 
ty under Turkish control, with MiloS Obrenovid as hereditary 
prince. The sultan also granted the Serbian Orthodox Church 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Figure 3. Expansion of Serbia, 1804-1913 

autonomy and reaffirmed Russia's right to protect Serbia. Poor ad- 
ministration, corruption, and a bloody rivalry between the Karad- 
jordjevic and Obrenovic clans marred Serbian political life from its 
beginning. After the sultan began allowing foreign governments to 
send diplomats to Serbia in the 1830s, foreign intervention further 
complicated the situation. Despite these obstacles and his autocrat- 
ic manner, however, MiloS Obrenovic stimulated trade, opened 
schools, and guided development of peasant lands. He abdicated 
in 1838 when Turkey imposed a constitution to limit his powers. 

In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, Serbian culture made 
significant strides. Dositej Obradovi£, Vuk KaradJic, and other 
scholars accelerated a national renaissance. Through his translations 


Historical Setting 

and autobiography, Obradovic spread the Enlightenment to the 
Serbs. Collections of Serbian folk songs and poems edited by Karad- 
zic awoke pride in national history and traditions. Karadzic also 
overcame clerical opposition to reform the Cyrillic alphabet and 
the Serbian literary language, and he translated the New Testa- 
ment. His work widened the concept of Serbian nationhood to in- 
clude language as well as religious and regional identifications. 

The European revolutions of 1848 brought more ferment in re- 
lations between the Serbs and their neighbors. As part of their 
revolutionary program, the Hungarians threatened to Magyarize 
the Serbs in Vojvodina. Some Serbs there declared their indepen- 
dence from Hungary and proclaimed an autonomous Vojvodina; 
others rallied behind the Austrian-Croatian invasion of Hungary. 
The Serbs nearly declared war, but Russian and Turkish diplomacy 
restrained them. The Serbs in Hungary gained nothing from help- 
ing Austria to crush the revolution. Vienna ruled Vojvodina harshly 
after 1850 and silenced Serbian irredentists there. When Austria 
joined Hungary to form the Dual Monarchy in 1867, Vienna 
returned Vojvodina and its Serbs to Hungary. Meanwhile, Petar 
II NjegoS of Montenegro (1830-51), who was also a first-rate poet, 
reformed his administration, battled the Turks, and struggled to 
obtain a seaport from the Austrians. His successor, Danilo II 
(1851-60), abolished the Montenegrin theocracy. 

Prince Mihajlo Obrenovic (1860-68), son of MiloS, was an ef- 
fective ruler who further loosened the Turkish grip on Serbia. 
Western-educated and autocratic, Mihajlo liberalized the consti- 
tution and in 1867 secured the withdrawal of Turkish garrisons 
from Serbian cities. Industrial development began at this time, 
although 80 percent of Serbia's 1 .25 million people remained illit- 
erate peasants. Mihajlo sought to create a South Slav confedera- 
tion, and he organized a regular army to prepare for liberation 
of Turkish-held Serbian territory. Scandal undermined Mihajlo' s 
popularity, however, and he was eventually assassinated. 

Political parties emerged in Serbia after 1868, and aspects of 
Western culture began to appear. A widespread uprising in the 
Ottoman Empire prompted an unsuccessful attack by Serbia and 
Montenegro in 1876, and a year later those countries allied with 
Russia, Romania, and Bulgarian rebels to defeat the Turks. The 
subsequent treaties of San Stefano and Berlin (1878) made Serbia 
an independent state and added to its territory, while Montenegro 
gained a seacoast. Alarmed at Russian gains, the growing stature 
of Serbia, and irredentism among Vojvodina's Serbs, Austria- 
Hungary pressed for and won the right to occupy Bosnia, Her- 
cegovina, and Novi Pazar in 1878. Serbia's Prince Milan Obrenovic' 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

(1868-89), a cousin of Mihajlo, became disillusioned with Russia 
and fearful of the newly created Bulgaria. He therefore signed a 
commercial agreement in 1880 that made Serbia a virtual client 
state of Austria-Hungary. Milan became the first king of modern 
Serbia in 1882, but his pro-Austro-Hungarian policies undermined 
his popularity, and he abdicated in 1889. 

A regency ruled Serbia until 1893, when Milan's teenage son, 
Aleksandar (1889-1903), pronounced himself of age and nullified 
the constitution. Aleksandar was widely unpopular in Serbia be- 
cause of scandals, arbitrary rule, and his position favoring Austria- 
Hungary. In 1903 military officers, including Dragutin "Apis" 
Dimitrijevic, brutally murdered Aleksandar and his wife. Europe 
condemned the killings, which, however, were celebrated in Bel- 
grade. Petar Karadjordjevic (1903-14), who knew of the conspiracy, 
returned from exile to take the throne, restored and liberalized the 
constitution, put Serbian finances in order, and improved trade 
and education. Petar turned Serbia away from Austria-Hungary 
and toward Russia, and in 1905 Serbia negotiated a tariff agree- 
ment with Bulgaria, hoping to break the Austro-Hungarian mo- 
nopoly of its exports. In response to a diplomatic disagreement, 
Vienna placed a punitive tariff on livestock, Serbia's most impor- 
tant export. Serbia, however, refused to bend, found new trade 
routes, and began seeking an oudet to the sea. In 1908 Austria- 
Hungary formally annexed Bosnia and Hercegovina, frustrating 
Serbian designs on those regions and precipitating an international 
crisis. The Serbs mobilized, but under German pressure Russia 
persuaded Belgrade to cease its protests. Thereafter, Belgrade main- 
tained strict official propriety in its relations with Vienna; but 
government and military factions prepared for a war to liberate the 
Serbs still living under the Turkish yoke in Kosovo, Macedonia, 
and other regions. 

Bosnia and Hercegovina 

In the seventh century, Croats and Serbs setded in the land that 
now makes up Bosnia and Hercegovina. Dominance of the regions 
shifted among the Croatian, Serbian, Bulgarian, and Byzantine 
rulers for generations before the Croatian and Hungarian crowns 
merged and Hungary dominated. Foreign interference in Bosnia 
and Hercegovina exacerbated local political and religious hostili- 
ties and ignited bloody civil wars. 

The heretical Bogomil faith played an important early role in 
Bosnian politics. Ban Kulin (1180-1204) and other nobles strug- 
gled to broaden Bosnian autonomy, rejected the Catholic and 
Orthodox faiths, and embraced Bogomilism, a dualist ic offshoot 


Tombstones of heretical Bogomil sect, Bosnia 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

of Christianity. The Bogomils enraged the papacy, and the Catholic 
kings of Hungary persecuted them to exterminate the heresy and 
secure Hungarian rule over Bosnia. Kulin recanted his conversion 
under torture, but the Bogomil faith survived crusades, civil war, 
and Catholic propaganda. 

In the fourteenth century, Bosnia became a formidable state 
under the rule of Ban Stefan Tvrtko I (1353-91). Tvrtko joined 
Bosnia with the principality of Hum, forerunner of Hercegovina, 
and attempted to unite the South Slavs under his rule. After the 
Serbian Nemanja Dynasty expired in 1371, Tvrtko was crowned 
king of Bosnia ami Raska in 1377, and he later conquered parts 
of Croatia and Dalmatia. Bosnian troops fought beside the Serbs 
at Kosovo Polje. After that defeat, Tvrtko turned his attention to 
forming alliances with Western states. Rival nobles and religious 
groups vied to gain control of Bosnia after the death of Tvrtko; 
one noble in Hum won the title of "Herzeg" (German for "duke"), 
whence the name "Hercegovina." 

The fifteenth century marked the beginning of Turkish rule in 
Bosnia. Most of Bosnia was taken in 1463, Hercegovina in 1483. 
Many Orthodox and Roman Catholics fled, while Bogomil nobles 
converted to Islam to retain their land and feudal privileges. They 
formed a unique Slavic Muslim aristocracy that exploited its Christian 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and Muslim serfs for centuries and eventually grew fanatical and 
conservative. Turkish governors supervised Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina from their capitals at Travnik and Mostar, respectively, but 
few Turks actually settled in these territories. Economic life 
declined, and the regions grew isolated from Europe and even Con- 
stantinople. As the sultan's military expenses grew, small farms 
were replaced by large estates, and peasant taxes were raised sub- 
stantially. When the Ottoman Empire weakened in the seventeenth 
century, Bosnia and Hercegovina became pawns in the struggle 
among Austria, Russia, and the Turks. 

The nineteenth century in Bosnia and Hercegovina brought al- 
ternating Christian peasant revolts against the Slavic Muslim land- 
holders and Slavic Muslim rebellions against the sultan. In 1850 
the Turkish government stripped the conservative Slavic Muslim 
nobles of power, shifted the capital of Bosnia to Sarajevo, and in- 
stituted centralized, highly corrupt rule. Austrian capital began to 
enter the regions, financing primitive industries and fostering a 
new Christian middle class. But the mosdy Christian serfs con- 
tinued to suffer the corruption and high rates of the Turkish tax 
system. In 1875 a peasant uprising in Hercegovina sparked an all- 
out rebellion in the Balkan provinces, provoking a European war. 
The Treaty of Berlin, which followed the Turkish defeat of 1878, 
gave Austria-Hungary the right to occupy Bosnia and Hercegovi- 
na to restore local order. 

The Treaty of Berlin brought a period of manipulation by the 
Austro-Hungarian Empire. The empire suppressed Muslim and 
Orthodox opposition to the occupation and introduced an orderly 
administration. But it retained the feudal system because Bosnia 
and Hercegovina technically remained Turkish states. Seeking to 
increase the Catholic population of Bosnia, Vienna sent Austrian, 
Hungarian, Croatian, and Polish administrators and colonized 
northern Bosnia with Catholic Slavs and Germans. The adminis- 
trator of the regions, Baron Benjamin Kallay (1882-1903), fostered 
economic growth, reduced lawlessness, improved sanitation, built 
roads and railroads, and established schools. However, Kallay, a 
Hungarian, exploited strong nationalist differences among the Mus- 
lim Slavs, Catholic Croats, and Orthodox Serbs. 

At the turn of the century, nationalist differences reached the 
point of explosion. Fearful that Turkey might demand the return 
of Bosnia and Hercegovina after a revolutionary government was 
established in Constantinople, Austria-Hungary precipitated a 
major European crisis by annexing the regions in October 1908. 
Serbia, which had coveted the regions, mobilized for war. The crisis 
subsided a year later when Russia and Serbia bowed to German 


Historical Setting 

pressure and all Europe recognized the Serbian annexation as a 
fait accompli. Domination by Austria had embittered the ethnic 
groups of Bosnia and Hercegovina. Muslim Slavs resented Turk- 
ish withdrawal from the Balkans; the Croats looked initially to Vien- 
na for support but were increasingly disappointed by its response; 
and the Bosnian Serbs, deeply dissatisfied with continued serfdom, 
looked to Serbia for aid. 


In its earliest history, Macedonia was ruled by the Bulgars and 
the Byzantines, who began a long tradition of rivalry over that ter- 
ritory. Slavs invaded and setded Byzantine Macedonia late in the 
sixth century, and in A.D. 679 the Bulgars, a Turkic steppe peo- 
ple, crossed into the Balkans and direcdy encountered the Byzan- 
tine Empire. The Bulgars commingled with the more numerous 
Slavs and eventually abandoned their Turkic mother tongue in favor 
of the Slavic language. The Byzantines and Bulgars ruled Macedo- 
nia alternately from the ninth to the fourteenth century, when Stefan 
DuSan of Serbia conquered it and made Skopje his capital. A local 
noble, VukaSin, called himself king of Macedonia after the death 
of DuSan, but the Turks annihilated VukaSin's forces in 1371 and 
assumed control of Macedonia. 

The beginning of Turkish rule meant centuries of subjugation 
and cultural deprivation in Macedonia. The Turks destroyed the 
Macedonian aristocracy, enserfed the Christian peasants, and even- 
tually amassed large estates and subjected the Slavic clergy to the 
Greek patriarch of Constantinople. The living conditions of the 
Macedonian Christians deteriorated in the seventeenth and eigh- 
teenth centuries as Turkish power declined. Greek influence in- 
creased, the Slavic liturgy was banned, and schools and monasteries 
taught Greek language and culture. In 1777 the Ottoman Empire 
eliminated the autocephalous Bulgarian Orthodox Church and the 
archbishopric of Ohrid. Because of such actions, the Slavic Macedo- 
nians began to despise Greek ecclesiastical domination as much 
as Turkish political oppression. 

In the nineteenth century, the Bulgars achieved renewed national 
self-awareness, which influenced events in Macedonia. The sul- 
tan granted the Bulgars ecclesiastical autonomy in 1870, creating 
an independent Bulgarian Orthodox Church. Nationalist Bulgar- 
ian clergymen and teachers soon founded schools in Macedonia. 
Bulgarian activities in Macedonia alarmed the Serbian and Greek 
governments and churches, and a bitter rivalry arose over Macedo- 
nia among church factions and advocates of a Greater Bulgaria, 
Greater Serbia, and Greater Greece. The 1878 Russo-Turkish War 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

drove the Turks from Bulgarian-populated lands, and the Treaty 
of San Stefano (1878) created a large autonomous Bulgaria that 
included Macedonia. The subsequent Treaty of Berlin (1878), 
however, restored Macedonia to the Ottoman Empire, and left the 
embittered Bulgars with a much-diminished state. 

The Bulgarian-Greek-Serbian rivalry for Macedonia escalated 
in the 1890s, and nationalistic secret societies proliferated. Macedo- 
nian refugees in Bulgaria founded the Supreme Committee for 
Liberation of Macedonia, which favored Bulgarian annexation and 
recruited its own military force to confront Turkish units and rival 
nationalist groups in Macedonia. In 1896 Macedonians founded 
the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO), 
whose two main factions divided the region into military districts, 
collected taxes, drafted recruits, and used tactics of propaganda 
and terrorism. 

A 1902 uprising in Macedonia provoked Turkish reprisals, and 
in 1903 IMRO launched a widespread rebellion that the Turks 
could not suppress for several months. After that event, the sultan 
agreed to a Russian and Austrian reform scheme that divided 
Macedonia into five zones and assigned British, French, Italian, 
Austrian, and Russian troops to police them. Pro-Bulgarian and 
pro-Greek groups continued to clash, while the Serbs intensified 
their efforts in northern Macedonia. In 1908 the Young Turks, 
a faction of Turkish officers who promised liberation and equali- 
ty, deposed the sultan. The Europeans withdrew their troops when 
Serbs and Bulgars established friendly relations with the zealous 
Turks. But the nationalist Young Turks began imposing central- 
ized rule and cultural restrictions, exacerbating Christian-Muslim 
friction. Serbia and Bulgaria ended their differences in 1912 by 
a treaty that denned their respective claims in Macedonia. A month 
later, Bulgaria and Greece signed a similar agreement. 

The Balkan Wars, World War I, and the Formation 
of Yugoslavia, 1912-18 

The Balkan wars and World War I had dramatic consequen- 
ces for the South Slavs. In the Balkan wars, Serbia helped expel 
the Turks from Europe and regained lands lost in medieval times. 
By 1914 the alliances of Europe and the ethnic friction among the 
South Slavs had combined to make Bosnia the ignition point, and 
Serbia one of the main battlegrounds, of World War I. When 
Austria-Hungary collapsed at the end of the war, fear of an ex- 
pansionist Italy inspired Serbian, Croatian, and Slovenian lead- 
ers to form the new federation known as Yugoslavia, "the land 
of the South Slavs." 


Historical Setting 

The Balkan Wars and World War I 

In 1912 Turkish chauvinism and atrocities combined with Al- 
banian insurgency to galvanize Serbia, Bulgaria, and Greece. In 
the First Balkan War, October 1912 to May 1913, these nations 
joined Montenegro to oust the Ottoman Empire from the Balkans. 
Besides capturing western Macedonia, Kosovo, and other Serbian- 
populated regions, Serbian forces moved through purely Albanian- 
populated lands to the Adriatic. Austria-Hungary convinced the 
major European powers to create an independent Albania to deny 
Serbia an Adriatic outlet, and it forced Serbia to remove its troops 
from Albanian territory. The Treaty of London (1913) awarded 
the Serbs almost all remaining Ottoman lands in Europe, but there 
was immediate conflict over the division of Macedonia. With 
Austro-Hungarian approval, Bulgaria attacked its erstwhile allies 
in June 1913, triggering the Second Balkan War. This time Ser- 
bia, Montenegro, Greece, Romania, and Turkey defeated Bulgaria 
and eliminated the possibility of Bulgarian participation in a South 
Slav state. Its victories filled Serbia with confidence and doubled 
its size. But the wars also weakened the country and left it with 
hostile neighbors and bitter Macedonian and Albanian minorities. 

Serbian victories and the Serbs' obvious contempt for Austria- 
Hungary brought hostility from Vienna and anti-Habsburg senti- 
ment in all the empire's South Slavic regions, especially Bosnia 
and Hercegovina. Confident behind German military protection, 
the high command of Austria-Hungary lobbied for war to eliminate 
Serbia. Serbia's alliance with Russia also encouraged the growth 
of expansionist, nationalist secret societies in the Serbian army. 
The most significant of these societies was the Black Hand, a group 
of army officers who dominated the army and influenced the govern- 
ment from 1911 to 1917. 

In 1914 Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Habsburg throne 
and a longtime advocate of equality for the South Slavs in the em- 
pire, made an ill-prepared visit to Bosnia. On Vidovdan, Bosnian 
student Gavrilo Princip assassinated the archduke and the arch- 
duchess in Sarajevo. The Black Hand had armed and trained the 
assassin, but historians doubt that the rulers of Serbia had approved 
the plot. Nevertheless, on July 23 Austria-Hungary sent an ultima- 
tum, threatening war unless Serbia allowed Vienna to join the mur- 
der investigation and suppress secret societies. Even the German 
kaiser felt that Serbia met the Austrian demands, but war was de- 
clared, the existing alliance structure of Europe went into force, and 
World War I began. The Central Powers — Germany, Austria-Hun- 
gary, and the Ottoman Empire — faced the Triple Entente — France, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Britain, and Russia. The Croats, Slovenes, and many Serbs in 
Austria-Hungary went to war against Serbia and Montenegro. 

Despite overwhelming odds, Serbia twice cleared its soil of in- 
vading Austro-Hungarian armies early in the war, and late in 1914 
plans were announced to unite the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes 
in a South Slavic state. Italy joined the Triple Entente in 1915 and 
attacked Austria-Hungary; then Bulgaria joined the side of Austria- 
Hungary in the fall of that year. With French and Italian forces 
waiting in nearby Salonika, German, Austro-Hungarian, and Bul- 
garian forces attacked Serbia in October 1915. The Serbian army, 
weakened by typhus, escaped through Montenegro and Albania 
in midwinter, suffering heavy losses. After Italian units in Alba- 
nia denied support, French ships evacuated the remaining Serbi- 
an forces to Corfu. 

Austria-Hungary and Bulgaria occupied Serbia and Montenegro 
after the retreat. After recovering, the Serbian army helped the 
French and British capture Bitola in September 1916. Entente ar- 
mies remained inactive there until the Central Powers began to 
disintegrate. They then routed the Bulgarians in September 1918, 
swept Austro-Hungarian and German forces from Serbia, and en- 
tered Hungary. In November Austria- Hungary collapsed, and the 
war ended. World War I destroyed one-fourth of Montenegro's 
population and several hundred thousand Croats and Slovenes. Ser- 
bia lost about 850,000 people, a quarter of its prewar population, 
and half its prewar resources. 

Formation of the South Slav State 

The idea of an independent South Slav state advanced during 
World War I, especially after Bolshevik Russia disclosed the secret 
1915 Treaty of London, in which the Entente had promised to 
award Istria and much of Dalmatia and the Slovenian lands to Italy. 
Because they feared Italian domination, Ante Trumbic and other 
Dalmatian leaders formed the London-based Yugoslav Commit- 
tee to promote creation of a South Slav state. In July 1917, Nikola 
Paste of Serbia and Trumbic signed the Declaration of Corfu, which 
called for a union of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes in one nation 
with a single democratic, constitutional, parliamentary system under 
the Karadjordjevic Dynasty. The declaration promised equal recog- 
nition of the Latin and Cyrillic alphabets, the three national names 
and flags, and the three predominant religions. However, it did 
not indicate whether the new state would be centralized or feder- 
al. PaSic advocated a centralized state; Trumbic pressed for a fed- 


Historical Setting 

The authority of Austria-Hungary over its South Slav lands 
ended in October 1918, and the National Council of Slovenes, 
Croats, and Serbs became the de facto government of the regions 
under Antun Korosec. On October 29, the Sabor in Zagreb an- 
nulled the union of Croatia with Hungary and gave the National 
Council supreme authority. In November PaSic, Trumbic, and 
Korosec signed an agreement in Geneva, providing for a joint provi- 
sional government but recognizing the jurisdiction of Serbia and 
the National Council in the areas under their respective control, 
until a constituent assembly could convene. But the war ended very 
rapidly, and Italy began seizing parts of Dalmatia. This prompt- 
ed the National Council to seal a quick final agreement with Serbia, 
over the objections of Croatia's Peasant Party, without obtaining 
guarantees of regional autonomy. Leaders in Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina and Vojvodina favored union; on November 24, the Mon- 
tenegrins deposed the Njegos Dynasty and declared solidarity with 
Serbia. On December 1, Prince Regent Aleksandar Karadjor- 
djevic and delegates from the National Council, Vojvodina, Bos- 
nia and Hercegovina, and Montenegro announced the founding 
of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, to be ruled 
by Aleksandar. The Paris Peace Conference recognized the king- 
dom in May 1919. 

The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 

Ethnic hatred, religious rivalry, language barriers, and cultural 
conflicts plagued the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes 
(later renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia) from its inception (see 
fig. 4). The question of centralization versus federalism bitterly 
divided the Serbs and Croats; democratic solutions were blocked, 
and dictatorship was made inevitable because political leaders had 
little vision, no experience in parliamentary government, and no 
tradition of compromise. Hostile neighboring states resorted to regi- 
cide to disrupt the kingdom, and only when European war threat- 
ened in 1939 did the Serbs and Croats attempt a settlement. But 
that solution came too late to matter. The Kingdom of the Serbs, 
Croats, and Slovenes encompassed most of the Austrian Slovenian 
lands, Croatia, Slavonia, most of Dalmatia, Serbia, Montenegro, 
Vojvodina, Kosovo, the Serbian-controlled parts of Macedonia, and 
Bosnia and Hercegovina. Territorial disputes disrupted relations 
with Italy, Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Albania. Italy posed the 
most serious threat to the new kingdom. Although it received Za- 
dar, Istria, Trieste, and several Adriatic islands in the postwar 
treaties and took Rijeka by force, Italy resented not receiving all 
the territory promised under the 1915 Treaty of London. Rome 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Source: Based on information from Gordon C. McDonald et al., Yugoslavia: A Cvuntn S:u !y, 
Washington, 1971, 44. 

Figure 4. South Slav Territories at Formation of Yugoslav State, 1918-19 

subsequently supported Croatian, Macedonian, and Albanian ex- 
tremists, hoping to stir unrest and hasten the end of the new king- 
dom. Revisionist Hungary and Bulgaria also backed anti-Yugoslav 

The creation of Yugoslavia fulfilled the dreams of many South 
Slavic intellectuals who disregarded fundamental differences among 
12 million people of the new country. The Serbs, Croats, and Slo- 
venes had conflicting political and cultural traditions, and the 
South Slav kingdom also faced sizable non-Slavic minorities, in- 
cluding Germans, Albanians, Hungarians, Romanians, and Turks, 
with scatterings of Italians, Greeks, Czechs, Slovaks, Ruthe- 
nians, Russians, Poles, Bulgars, Sephardic and Ashkenazic Jews, 
and Gypsies. The Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Islamic, Uniate, 


Historical Setting 

Jewish, and Protestant faiths all were well established and cut across 
ethnic and territorial lines. Besides the divisiveness of a large num- 
ber of minority languages, linguistic differences also split the Serbs, 
Croats, Slovenes, and Macedonian Slavs. Many people regarded 
the new government and its laws as alien, exploitative, and second- 
ary to kinship loyalties and traditions. 

Political Life in the 1920s 

Serbia's Radical Party and Democratic Party and Croatia's 
Peasant Party competed with and allied with a large number of 
other ethnic and sectarian parties, so that no single party ever gained 
a majority. The Radical Party under PaSic, the strongest party in 
the country, drew backing from Serbia proper (see Glossary) and 
advocated strong central control under Serbian leadership. The 
Peasant Party under Stjepan Radic dominated Croatia and cam- 
paigned for an independent Croatian state and agrarian socialism. 
The Democratic Party found support mostly from Serbs outside 
Serbia; after initially advocating centralism, it turned to an oppo- 
sition agenda. 

The Serbian-Croatian rivalry, which was a clash of uncom- 
promising advocates of central rule and regional autonomy, 
produced the main political conflict in Yugoslavia. In November 
1920, voters chose delegates to a constituent assembly. The Radic 
party won nearly all Croatian seats but, adopting an obstructionist 
strategy that had been typical of Croatian politics under the Dual 
Monarchy, boycotted the assembly. When other anticentralist 
groups left the assembly in 1921, the Radicals and Democrats won 
by default the opportunity to adopt a centralist constitution. This 
document provided some liberties but allowed little room for local 
initiative or popular democracy, and it gave non- Serbs inadequate 
legal expression of their discontent. Communists attempted to as- 
sassinate King Aleksandar the day after the constitution took ef- 
fect and murdered the interior minister a month later. The new 
Federal Assembly (Skup§tina) then passed broad security laws to 
suppress the Communist Party of Yugoslavia, which had gained 
considerable support with worker groups and poor peasants in the 

Radic campaigned at home and abroad for Croatian autonomy, 
even seeking support in the Soviet Union — a country the kingdom 
did not recognize. The Peasant Party boycott of the Federal As- 
sembly lasted until 1924, when a dissident coalition of Democrats, 
Slovenes, and Muslims forced the Radicals from power. King 
Aleksandar then appointed an anticentralist prime minister. 
Charges of corruption and Radic' s harsh criticism of the Serbian 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

establishment undermined the new cabinet. The Radicals soon 
regained power, arrested Radic for sedition, and threatened to ban 
his party. 

Political realities, including the threat posed by fascist Italy to 
Croatia, induced Radic in 1925 to strike a deal with Aleksandar 
to recognize the monarchy and to join a government coalition led 
by PaSic. This union lasted until a corruption scandal forced Pa§ic 
to resign in 1926. Thereafter, weak coalitions failed to maintain 
stability, the Croats returned to obstructionism, and floor debates 
in the Federal assembly often became violent. In June 1928, a Mon- 
tenegrin deputy shot Radic, who died two months later. Deputies 
from Croatia and Bosnia and Hercegovina soon left the assembly, 
demanding a federal state. Fearing anarchy, Aleksandar abrogat- 
ed the constitution in January 1929, dissolved the assembly, banned 
political parties, and declared a temporary royal dictatorship. 

While the Serbian-Croatian conflict occupied center stage, an 
equally bitter conflict arose between the Serbs and the ethnic Al- 
banians in Kosovo. Serbs consider Kosovo to be hallowed ground, 
but their exclusive hold on the region slipped during the Ottoman 
tyranny in the late seventeenth century, and many Serbs fled Koso- 
vo for Habsburg protection. After the mid-eighteenth century, Al- 
banians became a majority in Kosovo and began oppressing the 
Serbs that remained. Between 1878 and 1912, Serbs left Kosovo 
in large numbers; in 1920 Belgrade began a drive to resettle Serbs 
in the region. Coercion, illegal expropriation of Albanian-owned 
land, and forced deportations marred this campaign. When Alba- 
nians attacked Serbian settlements and government institutions, 
the police seized Albanian property, imprisoned families, and de- 
stroyed homes. The government adopted a similar policy in 

Economic Life and Foreign Policy in the 1920s 

Yugoslavia inherited formidable economic problems after World 
War I. The new kingdom had to repair war damage, repay debts, 
eradicate feudalism by passing land reform, make up for shortages 
of capital and skilled labor, and integrate differing customs areas, 
currencies, rail networks, and banking systems. 

The agricultural sector, which employed over 75 percent of the 
Yugoslav population, underwent a radical reform that failed to 
relieve nagging rural poverty. Before the war, German, Austrian, 
and Hungarian families owned sprawling estates in Slovenia, Croa- 
tia, and Vojvodina; Turkish feudalism remained in Kosovo and 
Macedonia; Muslim landlords in Bosnia owned large farms worked 
by Christian sharecroppers; some Dalmatians remained tenant 


Historical Setting 

farmers in a system devised in Roman times; and Serbia was a 
chaotic blend of independent small farms. The Yugoslav govern- 
ment erased remnants of feudalism, but the peasants received plots 
too small for efficient farming to support the rural population. Yields 
fell, and poverty and ignorance dominated most of the peasantry. 
Industrialization and emigration did not ease overpopulation. 

In the industrial sector, Yugoslavia concentrated on extracting 
raw materials, expanding light industry, and improving its infra- 
structure. Insufficient domestic capital forced Yugoslavia to seek 
foreign investment. The government sold mining rights to foreign 
firms and borrowed heavily to build roads and rail lines, power 
plants, and a merchant marine. Despite steady economic growth 
based on the food industry, mining, and textiles, Yugoslavia 
remained substantially undeveloped and fell far behind the rest of 
Europe. Divergent economic interests and the widening differences 
in development of Croatia and Slovenia with the less developed 
southern regions exacerbated Serbian-Croatian tensions. The devel- 
opment disparity especially embittered many Serbs, who believed 
that their sacrifices in the war had benefited former enemies more 
than themselves. 

Yugoslavia's foreign policy in the 1920s sought to counter threats 
from Italy, Hungary, and Bulgaria and to secure regional peace 
through a series of Balkan alliances. The young kingdom was a char- 
ter member of the League of Nations. In 1921 and 1922, Yugo- 
slavia, Romania, and Czechoslovakia signed mutual defense and 
political treaties aimed at blocking a Habsburg restoration and block- 
ing the ambitions of revisionist Hungary. This alignment, later 
known as the Little Entente, won support from France, which hoped 
to block Soviet expansion and contain Germany. In 1927 Yugoslavia 
and France signed a treaty of friendship. Though it was the focus 
of Yugoslav foreign policy for the next decade, this treaty included 
no military provisions and failed to relieve the fear of fascist Italy. 

The Royal Dictatorship 

After assuming dictatorial power, Aleksandar canceled civil lib- 
erties, abolished local self-government, and decreed strict laws 
against sedition, terrorism, and propagation of communism. The 
king named a Serb, General Petar £ivkovic, as prime minister, offi- 
cially changed the name of the country to the Kingdom of Yugosla- 
via in 1929, unified the six regional legal systems, and restructured 
the ministries. The king attempted to ease separatist pressures by 
replacing traditional provinces with a new territorial unit, the bano- 
vina. The dictatorship at first gained wide support because it seemed 
to make government more efficient and less corrupt. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

The popularity of the dictatorship was short lived, however. Alek- 
sandar's attempt to impose unity on the ethnic groups backfired, 
blocking the understanding of common national interests and un- 
leashing more divisive forces. The royal dictatorship unified Croa- 
tian opposition to Serbian hegemony but fractured the once-unified 
Serbian parties. The police violently suppressed expressions of com- 
munism and ethnic dissidence. The state imprisoned Slovenian and 
Muslim politicians and tried Vlatko Macek, successor to Radic, 
for terrorist activity. Serbs also were oppressed, and the leader of 
Serbia's Democrats left the country in protest. Ultranationalist 
Croats also fled, and Italy granted asylum to Ante Pavelic, leader 
of the terrorist UstaSe (see Glossary). 

In 1931 Aleksandar formally ended his personal rule by promul- 
gating a constitution that provided for limited democracy. He legal- 
ized political parties but banned religious, ethnic, and regional 
groups and all organizations that threatened the integrity and order 
of the state. Hopelessly divided Serbian and Croatian opposition 
leaders could not even agree to issue a common statement on the 
new constitution. Only the candidates of Zivkovic appeared on the 
ballot. Serbs protested the limitations on democratic liberties; the 
government imprisoned Macek, causing unrest in Croatia; and the 
ranks of the UstaSe grew. Despite the discontent, Aleksandar re- 
tained some popularity even in non-Serbian regions. 

In 1931 the world economic crisis hit Yugoslavia hard. Foreign 
trade slumped, and the trade deficit rose. Collapsing world grain 
prices, the end of German reparations payments, and exhaustion 
of credit sources brought unemployment. Mines closed, bankrupt- 
cies increased, and severe weather conditions brought rural star- 
vation. The economic crisis also brought charges that the Serbs 
were exploiting Croatia and Slovenia. Finally, French refusal of 
a badly needed loan shook the confidence of the Yugoslav govern- 
ment in its French ally. 

Fearing Italy but doubtful of France, Aleksandar made unsuc- 
cessful offers to Mussolini in the early 1930s and attempted to build 
a Balkan alliance. In 1934 Yugoslavia, Romania, Greece, and Tur- 
key signed a limited mutual defense agreement, later known as the 
Balkan Entente. Bulgaria refused to abandon its claims to Macedo- 
nia and did not join the pact, but tensions eased between Belgrade 
and Sofia. Fearing a vengeful, stronger Germany, France sought 
rapprochement with Italy in 1934, pressuring Yugoslavia to do like- 
wise. But Yugoslavia began to turn to Germany instead to offset 
the threat from Italy. 


Historical Setting 

The Regency 

In October 1934, a Bulgarian assassinated Aleksandar in Mar- 
seilles. The assassin, an Ustase agent, had received assistance from 
Italy and Hungary. Yugoslavs genuinely grieved for their king. 
Even Aleksandar' s opponents feared that his death would result 
in the disintegration of Yugoslavia. Croats and Slovenes especial- 
ly feared subjection to Italy. 

Prince Pavle, cousin of Aleksandar, created a three-man regen- 
cy to rule for Aleksandar' s minor son, Petar II. Pavle hoped to 
liberalize the regime and reconcile the Serbs and Croats without 
altering the 1931 constitution. The government freed Macek and 
in 1935 held elections that revealed significant dissatisfaction. Pavle 
soon called on the Serb Milan Stojadinovic to form a cabinet. His 
new government granted amnesty to political prisoners and per- 
mitted political parties additional leeway, but it refused to restore 
democracy and failed to solve the Croatian problem. Croatian 
separatists clashed with the police; communist- inspired student ac- 
tivists fomented disorder; and Croatian militia organizations 
formed. Macek and other Croatian leaders welcomed rising domes- 
tic and international tensions as positive forces that would bring 
about a federalist solution, and they refused to compromise or even 
enumerate their demands to the government. Stojadinovic incurred 
the wrath of Serbian nationalists when he submitted an agreement 
with the Vatican on regulation of Catholic affairs; the Federal As- 
sembly canceled the agreement, or Concordat, after Orthodox cler- 
gymen denounced it. 

The assassination of Aleksandar deepened Yugoslav mistrust of 
Italy, but confidence in France and Britain also dropped after those 
countries refused to back a League of Nations censure of Italy for 
harboring the assassin. Fearing isolation, Yugoslavia strengthened 
its ties with Germany, which became the main trading partner of 
Yugoslavia after the latter voted in the league in 1935 to impose 
economic sanctions on Italy for invading Ethiopia. Under Stojadi- 
novic, however, movement began toward setdements with Bulgaria 
and Italy. In January 1937, Yugoslavia and Bulgaria signed an 
eternal-friendship pact, violating the provisions of the Litde En- 
tente and weakening the Balkan Entente. In March Yugoslavia 
and Italy followed up a 1936 trade agreement with a treaty of friend- 
ship. In December Stojadinovic visited Mussolini and assured him 
that Yugoslavia would neither strengthen its relationship with 
Czechoslovakia and France nor recognize the Soviet Union. Still, 
Yugoslavia drew away from France only reluctantly, and public 
opinion remained firmly attached to the West. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Despite the support for democracy professed by the Stojadino- 
vic government, many Yugoslavs feared he aspired to become a 
fascist dictator. His supporters adopted the fascist salute and 
uniformed themselves in green shirts. The dictatorial air of Stojadi- 
novic, the Concordat, and accommodations with former enemies 
roused opponents in Serbia, with whom Macek struck up a quick 
friendship. Support for the prime minister dropped after the 1938 
elections, and Pavle forced him to resign in February 1939. DragiSa 
Cvetkovic was then named prime minister. 

Germany annexed Austria in March 1938 and smashed the Little 
Entente by partitioning Czechoslovakia later in the year; by 1939 
it had gained a stranglehold on the Yugoslav economy. Pavle and 
Cvetkovic reaffirmed Yugoslavia's friendship with Germany and 
Italy but tried in vain to loosen Germany's economic grip with ap- 
peals to Britain and France. Belgrade again professed friendship 
with Berlin and Rome after Italy occupied Albania in April 1939; 
but Yugoslav popular opinion grew more adamantly pro-Western, 
and in May the government revealed its true colors by secretly ship- 
ping its gold reserves to Britain and the United States. Both Ber- 
lin and Rome suspected Yugoslavia's motives. 

The Sporazum, Tripartite Pact, and Outbreak of World War II 

Nationalist strife and portents of war induced Pavle to shore up 
national unity by reconciling the Serbs and Croats. On August 26, 
1939, after months of negotiation, Cvetkovic and Matek sealed 
an agreement, the Sporazum, creating an autonomous Croatia. 
Under the Sporazum, Belgrade continued to control defense, in- 
ternal security, foreign affairs, trade, and transport; but an elect- 
ed Sabor and a crown-appointed ban would decide internal matters 
in Croatia. Ironically, the Sporazum fueled separatism. Macek and 
other Croats viewed autonomy as a step toward full Croatian in- 
dependence, so they began haggling over territory; Serbs attacked 
Cvetkovic, charging that the Sporazum brought no return to 
democracy and no autonomy; Muslims demanded an autonomous 
Bosnia; and Slovenes and Montenegrins espoused federalism. Pavle 
appointed a new government with Cvetkovic as prime minister and 
Macek as vice prime minister, but it gained little support. 

World War II began on September 1 , 1939. The collapse of France 
in June 1940 crushed Yugoslav hopes of French support. When 
Greece repelled Italian attacks in October 1940, Mussolini requested 
aid from Germany. Berlin in turn pressed the Balkan countries to 
sign the Tripartite Pact and align themselves with the Axis powers — 
Germany, Italy, and Japan. Romania signed in November 1940, 
and Bulgaria in March 1941 . Now virtually surrounded by enemies, 


Historical Setting 

neutral Yugoslavia desperately sought allies. It recognized the Soviet 
Union in 1940 and signed a nonaggression agreement with Moscow 
in 1941 . When Germany redoubled pressure on Yugoslavia to sign 
the Tripartite Pact, Pavle and the cabinet stalled, hoping that Ger- 
many would attack the Soviet Union and ease the pressure on them. 
Time ran out for Yugoslavia on March 25. Convinced that the 
military situation of the country was hopeless, the government 
ignored pro- Western public opinion and signed a protocol of adher- 
ence to the Tripartite Pact. In return, Hitler guaranteed that Ger- 
many would not press Yugoslavia for military assistance, move its 
army into Yugoslav territory, or violate Yugoslav sovereignty. 

On March 27, military officers overthrew the Cvetkovic-Macek 
cabinet, declared the sixteen-year-old Petar II king, and formed 
a new cabinet under General Dusan Simovic. Anti-German eu- 
phoria swept Belgrade; Yugoslav, British, French, and United 
States flags flew; and crowds shouted anti-Tripartite slogans. The 
demonstrations, however, unnerved the new government, which 
affirmed Yugoslav loyalty to the Tripartite Pact because of the coun- 
try's perilous position. But the declaration did not convince Hitler. 
On April 6, 1941, the Luftwaffe bombed Belgrade, killing thou- 
sands. Axis forces then invaded, the Yugoslav army collapsed, the 
king and government fled, and on April 17 remaining resistance 
forces surrendered unconditionally. 

Yugoslavia in World War II, 1941-45 

The Axis invasion caused panic in Yugoslavia as foreign occu- 
piers partitioned the country and terrorized its people. Bloody en- 
counters involved both invading and domestic forces throughout 
the four years of war. The communist-led Partisans (see Glossary) 
rose from near oblivion to dominate the country's resistance move- 
ment. They emerged from the war in firm control of the entire 

Partition and Terror 

Germany, Italy, Hungary, and Bulgaria dismembered Yugo- 
slavia (see fig. 5). Germany occupied Serbia and part of Vojvodina. 
It created the puppet Independent State of Croatia (Nezavisna drza- 
va Hrvatska — NDH) including Croatia and Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina, and it annexed northern Slovenia. Italy won southern Slovenia 
and much of Dalmatia, joined Kosovo with its Albanian puppet 
state, and occupied Montenegro. Hungary occupied part of Voj- 
vodina and Slovenian and Croatian border regions. Bulgaria took 
Macedonia and a part of southern Serbia. 

Germany unleashed a reign of terror and Germanization in 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Source. Based on information from Germany, Foreign Ministry, Documents on German For- 
eign Policy, 1919-1945, Washington, 1949. 

Figure 5. Partition of Yugoslavia, 194 J 

northern Slovenia. It resettled Slovenes in Serbia, moved German 
colonists onto Slovenian farms, and attempted to erase Slovenian 
cultural institutions. The Catholic hierarchy collaborated with the 
authorities in Italian-occupied southern Slovenia, which suffered 
less tyranny than the north. 

Germany and Italy supported the NDH and began diverting 
natural resources to the Axis war machine. When Ma£ek refused 
to collaborate, the Nazis made Ante Pavelid head of the NDH. His 
UstaSe storm troopers began eliminating the 2 million Serbs, Jews, 
and Gypsies in the NDH through forced religious conversion, 
deportation, and extreme violence. The NDH was backed en- 
thusiastically by some Croatian Catholic clergy, including the arch- 
bishop of Sarajevo; some Franciscan priests enlisted in the UstaSe 


Historical Setting 

and participated in massacres. The archbishop of Zagreb, Aloj- 
zije Stepinac, publicly welcomed and appeared with Pavelic while 
privately protesting NDH atrocities. Many Catholic priests, 
however, condemned the violence and helped Orthodox Serbs to 
practice their religion in secret. Even the Germans were appalled 
by Ustase violence, and Berlin feared the bloodbath would ignite 
greater Serbian resistance. Italy reoccupied areas of Hercegovina 
to halt the slaughter there. 

Jews and Serbs also were massacred in areas occupied by the 
Albanians and the Hungarians. Thousands of Serbs fled to Ser- 
bia, where the Germans had established a puppet regime under 
General Milan Nedic. Nedic considered himself a custodian rather 
than a collaborator and strove to limit the violence. In the south 
of Yugoslavia, many Macedonians welcomed Bulgarian forces, ex- 
pecting that Sofia would grant them autonomy; but a harsh Bul- 
garianization campaign ended their enthusiasm. 

Resistance in Yugoslavia developed mainly in dispersed units 
of the Yugoslav army and among Serbs fleeing genocide in Croa- 
tia and Bosnia and Hercegovina. Various armed groups in Serbia 
organized under the name Cetnik (pi., Cetnici — see Glossary), from 
the Serbian word for "detachment." Some Cetnici supported Ned- 
ic, others the communist-led Partisan guerrillas. The best known 
Cetnici were the followers of Colonel Draza Mihajlovic, a Serbian 
nationalist, monarchist, and staunch anticommunist. Certain that 
the Allies would soon invade the Balkans, Mihajlovic advised his 
Cetnici to avoid clashes with Axis forces and prepare for a general 
uprising to coincide with the Allied push. In October 1941, Brit- 
ain recognized Mihajlovic as the leader of the Yugoslav resistance 
movement, and in 1942 the government-in-exile promoted him to 
commander of its armed forces. 

The Resistance Movement 

The communist-led Partisans eventually grew into Yugoslavia's 
largest, most active resistance group. The Communist Party of Yu- 
goslavia (CPY) had sunk into obscurity after the government 
banned it in 1921. Police repression, internal conflict, and the 
Stalinist purges of the 1930s depleted party membership, and by 
the late 1930s its leadership in Moscow directed only a few hundred 
members inside Yugoslavia. The Partisan leader, Josip Broz Tito, 
son of a Croatian-Slovenian peasant family, had joined the Red 
Guards during the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution and become a party 
member after returning to Yugoslavia. Tito won membership in 
the Central Committee of the CPY in 1934, then became secre- 
tary general after a 1937 purge. In the four years before the war, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Tito directed a communist resurgence and built a strong organi- 
zation of 12,000 full party members and 30,000 members of the 
youth organization. The party played some role in demonstrations 
in Belgrade against the Tripartite Pact, and it called for a general 
uprising after Hitler attacked the Soviet Union in June 1941 . The 
Partisan slogan "Death to Fascism, Freedom to the People," com- 
bined with a pan- Yugoslav appeal, won recruits for Tito across 
the country — despite the fact that before the war the communists 
had worked for the breakup of Yugoslavia. 

In July 1941, with some Cetnik support, the Partisans launched 
uprisings that won control of much of the Yugoslav countryside. 
The Partisan leaders established an administration and proclaimed 
the Uzice Republic in western Serbia. But in September the Axis 
struck back. Germany warned that it would execute 100 Serbs for 
every German soldier the resistance killed, and German troops killed 
several thousand civilians at Kragujevac in a single reprisal. Tito 
correctly reasoned that such actions would enrage the population 
and bring the Partisans more recruits, so he disregarded the Ger- 
man threat and continued his guerrilla warfare. He also arranged 
assassinations of local political figures and ordered attacks on the 
Cetnici to coincide with German action against them. Mihajlovic, 
however, feared that German reprisals would turn into a Serbian 
massacre, so he ordered his forces not to engage the Germans. Af- 
ter fruidess negotiations with Tito, the Cetnik leader turned against 
the Partisans as his main enemy. Cetnik units attacked Partisans 
in November 1941 and began cooperating with the Germans and 
Italians to prevent a communist victory. The British liaison to Mi- 
hajlovic advised London to stop supplying the Cetnici after the 
UZice attack, but Britain continued to supply Mihajlovic. 

In late 1941, the Partisans lost control of western Serbia, Mon- 
tenegro, and other areas, and their central command withdrew into 
Bosnia. Despite the setbacks, Bosnian Serbs and other Yugoslavs 
flocked to the Partisans. The Serbian-based Cetnici expanded into 
Montenegro, where they gained local and Italian support. Soviet 
dictator Joseph V. Stalin, fearing that Partisan action might weaken 
Allied trust of the Soviet Union and suspicious of revolutionary 
movements not under his control, reportedly instructed Tito to limit 
the Partisans to national liberation and antifascist activities. Moscow 
refused to supply arms to Tito, maintained relations with the 
government-in-exile, and even offered a military mission and sup- 
plies to the Cetnici. 

At Bihac in November 1942, the Partisan leaders, anxious to 
gain political legitimacy, convened the first meeting of the Antifas- 
cist Council for the National Liberation of Yugoslavia (AntifaSisticIco 


Historical Setting 

vece narodnog oslobodjenja Jugoslavije — AVNOJ), a committee 
of communist and noncommunist Partisan representatives from 
all over Yugoslavia. AVNOJ became the political umbrella organi- 
zation for the people's liberation committees that the Partisans es- 
tablished to administer territories under their control. AVNOJ 
proclaimed support for democracy, the rights of ethnic groups, the 
inviolability of private property, and freedom of individual eco- 
nomic initiative. Stalin reportedly barred Tito from declaring AV- 
NOJ a provisional government. In 1943 Germany mounted 
offensives to improve its control of Yugoslavia in anticipation of 
an Allied invasion of the Balkans. The Partisans, fearing that an 
Allied invasion would benefit the Cetnici, attacked Mihajlovic's 
forces. In March the Partisans outmaneuvered the German army 
and defeated the Cetnici decisively in Hercegovina and Mon- 
tenegro. In May, however, German, Italian, Bulgarian, and NDH 
forces surrounded the Partisans and launched a final crushing at- 
tack. In fierce combat in the Sutjeska Gorge, the Partisans escaped 
encirclement. This proved a turning point in their fortunes; when 
Italy surrendered in September 1943, the Partisans captured Italian 
arms, gained control of coastal territory, and began receiving sup- 
plies from the Allies in Italy. 

Tito convened a second session of AVNOJ in November 1943. 
This session, which included representatives of various ethnic and 
political groups, built the basis for the postwar government of Yu- 
goslavia. AVNOJ voted to reconstitute the country on a federal 
basis; elected a national committee to act as the temporary govern- 
ment; named Tito marshal of Yugoslavia and prime minister ; and 
issued a declaration forbidding King Petar to return to the coun- 
try until a popular referendum had been held on the status of the 
monarchy. Tito did not notify Stalin of the November meeting, 
which enraged the Soviet leader. The Western Allies, however, were 
not alarmed because they believed that the Partisans were the only 
Yugoslav resistance group actively fighting the Germans. At Te- 
heran in December 1943, Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin decid- 
ed to support the Partisans. A month later, Britain stopped 
supplying the Cetnici and threw full support to the Partisans. The 
first Soviet mission arrived at Partisan headquarters shortly there- 
after. The United States kept a military mission with Mihajlovic 
to encourage continued Cetnik aid for downed American fliers. 

In May 1944, German airborne forces attacked Tito's headquar- 
ters in Drvar, nearly capturing him. Tito fled to Italy and then 
established new headquarters on the Adriatic island of Vis. After 
throwing full support to the Partisans, Britain worked to reconcile 
Tito and Petar. In June 1944, at Britain's urging, Petar named 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Ivan Subasic, former ban of Croatia, as prime minister of the 
government-in-exile. Subasic accepted the resolutions of the second 
AVNOJ conference, and Petar agreed to remain outside Yugosla- 
via. In September the king succumbed to British pressure and sum- 
moned all Yugoslavs to back the Partisans. 

When the Red Army reached the Yugoslav-Romanian border 
in September 1944, Tito traveled secretly to Moscow, arranged 
for Soviet troops to enter Yugoslavia, and secured Stalin's word 
that the Red Army would leave the country once it was secure, 
without interfering in domestic politics. Soviet troops crossed the 
border on October 1 , and a joint Partisan-Soviet force liberated 
Belgrade on October 20. The majority of the Red Army then con- 
tinued into Hungary, leaving the Partisans and the Western Al- 
lies to crush remaining Germans, Ustase, and Cetnici. When the 
Partisans advanced into Croatia in the bloodiest fighting of the war, 
Ustase leaders and collaborators fled to Austria with regular Croa- 
tian and Slovenian troops and some Cetnici. The Partisans finally 
occupied Trieste, Istria, and some Slovenian enclaves in Austria, 
but they withdrew from some of these areas after the Allies per- 
suaded Tito to let the postwar peace conferences setde borders. 
The Partisans crushed a small Albanian nationalist revolt in Kosovo 
after Tito and Albanian communist leader Enver Hoxha announced 
that they would return Kosovo to Yugoslavia. 

World War II claimed 1.7 million Yugoslav lives, 11 percent 
of the prewar population — a mortality second only to that of Poland. 
About 1 million of those were killed by other Yugoslavs. The aver- 
age age of the dead was twenty-two years. The country's major 
cities, production centers, and communications systems were in 
ruins, and starvation was widespread (see World War II and Recov- 
ery, ch. 3). 

Postwar Yugoslavia 

Communist Takeover and Consolidation 

The communists under Tito emerged from the war as sole rul- 
ers of Yugoslavia, without major Soviet assistance. King Petar sur- 
rendered his powers to a three-member regency in late 1944, and 
under Allied pressure Tito and SubaSic agreed to merge their 
governments. On March 7, 1945, a single provisional Yugoslav 
government took office with Tito as prime minister and war 
minister, SubaSic in charge of foreign affairs, and Tito supporters 
occupying almost all cabinet posts. A communist-dominated Provi- 
sional Assembly convened in August, and the government held elec- 
tions to choose a constituent assembly in November. New election 


World War II concentration camp near Ms, Serbia 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

laws barred alleged wartime collaborators from voting, and all can- 
didates had to be nominated by the communist-controlled People's 
Front, the descendant of the wartime People's Liberation Front 
that encompassed all noncollaborationist political parties and r . - 
ganizations. The police harassed noncommunist politicians and sup- 
pressed their newspapers during the election campaign. Suba§ic 
and other noncommunist ministers resigned in protest, while Ser- 
bia's Radical Party, Croatia's Peasant Party, and other parties boy- 
cotted the election. People's Front candidates won 90 percent of 
the vote. 

The newly elected constituent assembly dissolved the monarchy 
and established the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia on 
November 29, 1945. Two months later, it adopted a Soviet-style 
constitution that provided for a federation of six republics under 
a strong central government. In an effort to prevent Serbian domi- 
nation of the new state, the regime made separate republics of Mon- 
tenegro and Macedonia and created within Serbia itself the 
ethnically mixed Autonomous Province of Vojvodina and the mosdy 
Albanian Autonomous Province of Kosovo. At a later date, the 
regime further divided Serbian territory by recognizing three ' na- 
tions" (see Glossary), the Serbs, Croats, and Muslim Slavs, in an 
attempt to overcome competing Serbian and Croatian claims 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

to that republic. The constitution established a rubber-stamp Fed- 
eral Assembly and a presidential council to administer the federal 
government. It also included restricted wording on the inviolabil- 
ity of the home, the right to work, and freedom of speech, associa- 
tion, and religion, among other rights. Tito headed the party, 
government, and armed forces; his party functionaries oversaw the 
industries and supervised republic and local officials. 

Tito's government repaired wartime damage, instituted land 
reform, and established a Soviet-style economic system. United 
Nations deliveries of supplies prevented starvation and the spread 
of disease but did not solve the fundamental problem of rural 
poverty. In August 1945, the regime seized remaining large and 
medium-size landholdings along with property belonging to banks, 
churches, monasteries, absentee landlords, private companies, and 
the expelled German minority. It gave half the land to peasants and 
allocated the rest to state-owned enterprises. The authorities post- 
poned forced collectivization but required peasants to sell any sur- 
plus to the state at below-market prices. Peasants received incentives 
to join newly founded state and cooperative farms. The CPY quickly 
implemented the Stalinist model for rapid industrial development; 
by 1948 it had nationalized virtually all the country's wealth ex- 
cept privately held land. State planners set wages and prices and 
compiled a grandiose five-year plan that emphasized exploitation 
of domestic raw materials, development of heavy industry, and eco- 
nomic growth in underdeveloped regions. The Yugoslavs relied 
on tax and price policies, reparations, Soviet credits, and export 
of foodstuffs, timber, minerals, and metals to generate capital. They 
redirected the bulk of their trade toward the Soviet Union and 
Eastern Europe (see Application of Stalinist Economics, ch. 3). 

Between 1945 and 1948, the government punished wartime col- 
laborators. British forces in Austria captured Ustase members and 
Croatian and Slovenian collaborators along with innocent refugees. 
These were returned to Yugoslavia, where Partisans summarily 
executed thousands of innocent and guilty prisoners. The regime 
also imprisoned thousands of Cetnici and executed Mihajlovic and 
other Cetnik leaders as collaborators after a show trial in 1946. 

The communists often used collaboration charges to stifle po- 
litical and religious opposition, as well as economic and social in- 
itiatives. The Roman Catholic Church bitterly opposed the new 
order. After the war, the authorities executed over 200 priests and 
nuns charged with participating in Ustase atrocities. Archbishop 
Stepinac protested government excesses and the secularization of 
education, institution of civil marriage, and confiscation of church 


Historical Setting 

lands. In September 1946, the regime sentenced him to imprison- 
ment for sixteen years for complicity with the Pavelic government. 
He served five years before the regime released him. Yugoslav- 
Vatican relations deteriorated during the imprisonment of Stepinac, 
and the government severed them in 1952 when Pope Pius XII 
named Stepinac a cardinal. The authorities permitted the funeral 
and burial of Stepinac in Zagreb in 1960, after which Yugoslav- 
Vatican relations gradually improved until diplomatic relations were 
reestablished in 1970. 

The Yugoslav-Soviet Rift 

Fearing that Soviet control of Eastern Europe was slipping, Stalin 
ceased advocating "national roads to socialism" in 1947 and or- 
dered creation of a Soviet-dominated socialist alliance. In September 
the Soviet, East European, Italian, and French communist par- 
ties founded the Cominform (Communist Information Bureau — 
see Glossary), a successor to the prewar Comintern (Communist 
International) that Stalin had hoped to manipulate for the benefit 
of the Soviet Union. 

Establishment of Cominform headquarters in Belgrade strength- 
ened the image that Yugoslavia was the staunchest Soviet ally in 
Eastern Europe. Stalin, however, saw Yugoslavia's independent 
communists as a threat to his hold on Eastern Europe, and hidden 
resentment strained relations between the Yugoslav and Soviet lead- 
ers. Resentment had grown on the Yugoslav side during the war 
because of Stalin's objections to the Partisans' political initiatives, 
his refusal to provide the Partisans military aid early in the strug- 
gle, and his wartime agreements with Churchill and Roosevelt. Af- 
ter the war, Yugoslav leaders complained about Red Army looting 
and raping in Yugoslavia during 1944 and 1945 and about unfair 
trade arrangements. The Yugoslavs also resisted establishment of 
joint companies that would have allowed Moscow to dominate their 

In early 1948, the Soviet Union stalled negotiations on a 
Yugoslav-Soviet trade treaty and began claiming that the Red Army 
had liberated Yugoslavia and facilitated the Partisan victory. In 
March the Soviet Union withdrew its military and civilian advisers 
from Yugoslavia, charging the Yugoslavs with perversion of Stalinist 
dogma. The Yugoslavs rejected the charges, criticized the Soviet 
Union for recruiting spies within the Yugoslav party, military, 
police, and enterprises, and defiantly asserted that a communist 
could love his native land no less than the Soviet Union. This in- 
subordination infuriated Stalin, and Yugoslav-Soviet exchanges 
grew more heated. Finally, at a special session in Bucharest that the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Yugoslavs refused to attend, the Cominform shocked the world by 
expelling Yugoslavia and calling upon Yugoslav communists to 
overthrow Tito. 

At first the CPY responded to the Cominform measures with 
conciliatory overtures. Portraits of Stalin, Marx, Engels, and Tito 
hung side by side at the Fifth Party Congress in July 1948, and 
the delegates chanted pledges of support for Stalin and the Soviet 
Union. In a lengthy address, Tito refuted Soviet charges against 
Yugoslavia, but he refrained from attacking Stalin. The vast majori- 
ty of Yugoslavs supported Tito. The press publicized Soviet attacks 
widely; Moscow appealed for loyalty, but its appeals were nulli- 
fied by renewed claims that the Red Army had liberated Yugosla- 
via from fascism. A few prominent Yugoslav communists did defect, 
and for five years after 1948 the regime imprisoned thousands of 
suspected pro-Soviet communists. 

The Yugoslav regime strove to prove its allegiance to Stalin af- 
ter 1948. It answered Moscow's criticisms by supporting Soviet 
foreign policy and implementing additional Stalinist economic mea- 
sures. In 1949 the Yugoslav government began collectivizing 
agriculture; over the next two years, it used a carrot-and-stick ap- 
proach to induce 2 million peasants to join about 6,900 collective 
farms. The campaign, however, caused a decrease in agricultural 
output, and the use of coercion eroded peasant support for the 
government. Peasant resistance and a 1950 drought that threatened 
the cities with starvation soon stalled the collectivization drive. The 
government announced the program's cancellation in 1952. 

In 1949 Yugoslavia stood isolated. Relations with the West wors- 
ened because of the bitter dispute with Italy over Trieste, the re- 
gime's refusal to compensate foreigners for nationalized property, 
continued Yugoslav support for the communists in Greece, and 
other issues. The Soviet alliance launched an economic blockade 
against Yugoslavia, excluding it from the Council for Mutual Eco- 
nomic Assistance (Comecon — see Glossary). The Soviet Union 
propagandized harshly against "Judas" Tito in Serbo-Croatian 
broadcasts, attempted to subvert CPY organizations, and sought 
to incite unrest among the Hungarian, Albanian, and Russian 
minorities in Yugoslavia. 

Troop movements and border incidents convinced Yugoslav lead- 
ers that a Soviet-led invasion was imminent, requiring fundamen- 
tal changes in foreign policy. In July 1949, Tito closed the 
Yugoslav-Greek border and ceased supplying the pro-Cominform 
Greek communists, and in August Yugoslav votes in the United 
Nations began to stray from the Soviet line. Welcoming the 
Yugoslav-Soviet rift, the West commenced a flow of economic aid 


Historical Setting 

in 1949, saved the country from hunger in 1950, and covered much 
of Yugoslavia's trade deficit for the next decade. The United States 
began shipping weapons to Yugoslavia in 1951 . A military securi- 
ty arrangement was concluded in 1953, but the Western powers 
were unable to bring Yugoslavia into the North Atlantic Treaty 
Organization (NATO). Italy won control of Trieste in 1954. 

Introduction of Socialist Self-Management 

Faced with economic stagnation, a Soviet-led trade embargo, 
dwindling popularity, and a dysfunctional Soviet-style economic 
system, Yugoslav leaders returned to the core of their philosophy, 
the writings of Marx. Their aim was to reassess their ideology and 
lay the groundwork for a new economic mechanism called socialist 
(or workers') self-management. Enterprises formed prototype work- 
ers' councils in 1949, and the Federal Assembly passed laws in 1950 
and 1951 to implement the system fully. These laws replaced state 
ownership of the means of production with social ownership, en- 
trusting management responsibilities to the workers of each enter- 
prise. The laws empowered enterprise workers' councils to set broad 
production goals and supervise finances, but government-ap- 
pointed directors retained veto power over council decisions. The gov- 
ernment also reformed economic planning and freed some prices 
to fluctuate according to supply and demand, but foreign trade re- 
mained under central control (see Socialist Self-Management, ch. 3). 

The replacement of a command economy with a self-management 
system required the CPY to loosen its hold on decision making. 
At its Sixth Party Congress, in November 1952, the party renamed 
itself the League of Communists of Yugoslavia (LCY — see Glos- 
sary) to signal a break with its Stalinist past and a revision of its 
leading role in the country's political life. The congress declared 
that the party would separate itself structurally from the state. In- 
stead of directing government and economic activity, the party was 
to influence democratic decision making through education, 
propaganda, and the participation of individual communists in po- 
litical institutions, workers' councils, and other organizations. Free 
intraparty debate would determine party policy, but once the party 
had made a final decision, the principle of democratic centralism 
would bind all members to support it. By rejecting multiparty 
pluralism, the party retained a monopoly on political organization. 
Three months after the congress, the People's Front became the 
Socialist Alliance of Working People of Yugoslavia (SAWPY), an 
umbrella organization through which the party would maintain this 
monopoly. In addition, individual communists continued to oc- 
cupy key government and enterprise-management posts. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

In 1953 the Federal Assembly amended virtually the entire 1946 
constitution to conform with the new laws on socialist self- 
management. On the federal level, the amendments created an 
administrative Federal Executive Council and reorganized the Fed- 
eral Assembly. The amendments also reduced the already minimal 
autonomy of the individual republics, while local government re- 
tained power in economic and social matters. 

In March 1953, the government began dissolving collective and 
state farms. Two-thirds of the peasants abandoned the collectives 
within nine months, and the socialist share of landownership sank 
from 25 percent to 9 percent within three years. In an attempt to 
mitigate the problem of peasant landlessness, the government 
reduced the legal limit on individual holdings from twenty-five or 
thirty-five hectares of cultivable land to ten hectares; this restric- 
tion would remain on the books for over three decades and would 
prevent the development of economically efficient family farms. 
The government also eliminated the system of compulsory deliv- 
eries, fixed taxes in advance, encouraged peasants to join purchasing 
and marketing cooperatives, and increased investment in the 
agricultural sector. As a result, Yugoslav agricultural output grew 
steadily through the 1950s, and its farms had record harvests in 
1958 and 1959. Yugoslavia maintained its focus on industrial de- 
velopment through the 1950s, despite the government's new ap- 
proach to economic planning and enterprise management. The 
industrial sector boomed after 1953; manufacturing exports more 
than doubled between 1954 and 1960; and the country showed the 
world's second highest economic growth rate between 1957 and 

Living conditions, health care, education, and cultural life im- 
proved in the wake of the economic and political reforms. In the 
mid-1950s, the government redirected investment toward produc- 
tion of consumer goods, and foreign products became widely avail- 
able. The regime also relaxed its religious restrictions, allowed for 
a degree of public criticism, curbed abuse of privileges by par- 
ty officials, and reduced the powers of the secret police. Travel 
restrictions eased; Yugoslavs gained greater access to Western liter- 
ature and ideas; artists abandoned "socialist realism" to experi- 
ment with abstractionism and other styles; and film makers and 
writers, including Nobel Prize-winner Ivo Andric, produced first- 
rate works. But already in 1953, liberalization was an uneven, 
changeable phenomenon in Yugoslavia. A meeting of party leaders 
at the north Adriatic island of Brioni that year resolved to strengthen 
party discipline, amid growing concern that apathy had infected 
the rank and file since the Sixth Party Congress. Over the next 


Historical Setting 

several years, the party tightened democratic centralism; established 
basic party organizations in factories, universities, and other in- 
stitutions; purged its rolls of inactive members; and took other meas- 
ures to enhance discipline. 

Milovan Djilas, one of Tito's closest confidants, disagreed with 
the Brioni decisions. In a number of articles in the foreign press, 
he criticized the party leadership for stifling democratic intraparty 
debate. He also exposed elitism in the private lives of leaders and 
suggested that the LCY dissolve itself as a rigid political party. This 
criticism exceeded Tito's tolerance, and his former comrades dis- 
missed Djilas from his posts and imprisoned him. In 1957 Djilas 
published The New Class, in which he described the emergence of 
a new communist ruling elite that enjoyed all the privileges of the 
old bourgeoisie. The book won him international notoriety and 
prolonged his jail term. Publication of Conversations with Stalin in 
1962 earned him more fame and a second prison term (see Djilas, 
Praxis, and Intellectual Repression, ch. 4). 

Nonalignment and Yugoslav-Soviet Rapprochement 

Yugoslav-Soviet relations showed signs of new life soon after Sta- 
lin died in March 1953. In an unprecedented gesture, Nikita S. 
Khrushchev, first secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet 
Union (CPSU), visited Tito in Belgrade in 1955. Khrushchev ex- 
pressed the regrets of the CPSU for the rift, although he did not 
blame it on Stalin directly. Tito rejected this explanation, and af- 
ter formal discussions the Yugoslav and Soviet leaders decided to 
resume only state relations. In the final communique of the meet- 
ing, known as the Belgrade Declaration, the Soviet Union ac- 
knowledged the right of individual socialist countries to follow their 
own path toward socialism. 

The LCY and CPSU restored relations in 1956, and at the 
CPSU's Twentieth Party Congress, Khrushchev blasted Stalin for 
his "shameful role" in the Yugoslav-Soviet estrangement. After 
a visit to the Soviet Union in June that deepened the rapproche- 
ment, Tito entertained hopes that all of Eastern Europe would adopt 
some version of Yugoslavia's model for socialist development. 
Movement toward liberalization in the Soviet alliance, however, 
ground to a halt with the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and the Soviet 
invasion that crushed it. Yugoslav-Hungarian relations cooled af- 
ter the execution of Imre Nagy, the Hungarian revolutionary leader 
who had taken asylum in the Yugoslav embassy in Budapest. 
Yugoslav-Soviet relations were unstable in the years following the 
Hungarian invasion, but by 1961 they had entered a period of 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Nonalignment became the keystone of Yugoslavia's foreign policy 
in the 1950s. While isolated from the superpowers, Yugoslavia 
strove to forge strong ties with Third World countries similarly in- 
terested in avoiding an alliance with East or West and the hard 
choice between communism and capitalism. Tito found common 
ground with Egypt's President Gamal Abdul Nasser and India's 
Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, and they worked together to 
organize a movement of Third World nations whose collective state- 
ments on international issues would carry greater weight than their 
individual voices. In 1961 Belgrade hosted the first major confer- 
ence of the world's nonaligned nations. Tito used the prestige gained 
from the meeting and from his denunciations of neocolonialism 
to enhance the leverage gained by positioning Yugoslavia between 
East and West. 

Reforms of the 1960s 

Initial steps toward market socialism (see Glossary) and freer 
foreign trade in 1961 produced unacceptable inflation and a foreign- 
trade deficit, and emergency anti-inflation measures plunged Yu- 
goslavia into recession in 1962. The recession produced an urgent 
debate on fundamental economic reforms, especially decentrali- 
zation of investment decision making. During the debate, natur- 
ally conflicting interregional economic interests rekindled ethnic 
rivalries, and emotional nationalist claims reemerged to compli- 
cate economic discussions. Party leaders were unable to solve the 
widening economic gap between the country's more prosperous 
northern republics and the underdeveloped southern regions. 
Resentment grew from suspicions that some republics were receiv- 
ing an unfair share of investment funds. 

The government adopted stopgap recentralization measures to 
end the recession in 1962, but inflation and the foreign-trade deficit 
again rose sharply, renewing debate on economic reforms. Led by 
Eduard Kardelj and Vladimir Bakaric, party liberals (mostly from 
Slovenia, Croatia, and the Belgrade area) promoted decentraliza- 
tion measures and investment strategies that would benefit the 
wealthier republics. Conservatives (mostly from Serbia and Mon- 
tenegro) supported maintaining or stiffening central controls and 
continuing investment in the less developed regions (see Overhaul 
in the 1960s, ch. 3). 

In 1963 Yugoslavia established new constitutions at the nation- 
al and republic level, expanding the concept of self-management 
beyond the economic sphere into social activity. This was achieved 
by creating local councils for education and culture, social welfare, 
public health, and political administration. The composition of the 


Piesident Tito with Nehru of India and Nasser of Egypt, at meeting 
of Nonaligned Movement leaders, Brioni, 1956 
Courtesy Embassy of Yugoslavia, Washington 

Federal Assembly was altered, simultaneous officeholding in the 
party and government was outlawed (except for Tito), and govern- 
ment tenure was limited and dispersed by the introduction of a 
regular rotation system (see The 1963 Constitution, ch. 4). 

In the mid-1960s, the parliamentary institutions became more 
active, as Federal Assembly members criticized cabinet secretar- 
ies and amended bills and as liberal reformers used the assembly 
to advance their ideas. Between 1964 and 1967, the assembly 
reduced the role of the state in economic management and created 
the legislative foundation of market socialism. Reform also included 
external trade measures: Yugoslavia devalued its currency, obtained 
foreign loans, and joined the General Agreement on Tariffs and 
Trade (GATT — see Glossary). 

The period immediately following this set of reforms brought 
stagnation, rising unemployment, unpopular price increases, illi- 
quidity, increases in income disparity, and calls for new reforms. 
Leaders in Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, and elsewhere scram- 
bled to stave off efforts to close unprofitable enterprises in their 
areas. Slovenes and Croats came to resent requirements for heavy 
investment in less developed republics at the expense of their own 
modernization. Yugoslav workers themselves eased unemployment 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

by finding guest worker jobs in Western Europe (see Structure of 
the Economy, ch. 3). Foreign tourists and workers returning from 
abroad brought Yugoslavia much-needed foreign currency. A 1967 
law allowed foreigners to invest up to 49 percent in partnerships 
with Yugoslav firms and repatriate their profits, and in 1970 Yu- 
goslavia signed a long-sought commercial agreement with the Euro- 
pean Economic Community (EEC — see Glossary). The postreform 
recession ended in 1969 as unemployment dropped and incomes 
and living standards rose, but inflation again gained momentum, 
and many enterprises remained unprofitable (see The Economic 
Reform of 1965, ch. 3). 

Certain that the reforms would undermine party control and 
threaten Yugoslavia's survival, pro-centralist party leaders and mid- 
level bureaucrats attempted to obstruct their implementation. Again 
the centers of this movement were Serbia and Montenegro. The 
key opponent of reform was the hard-line Serbian vice president 
of Yugoslavia, Aleksandar Rankovic, who also directed party cadres 
and the secret police. In 1966 the army intelligence unit, composed 
mostly of Croats, examined complaints that the secret police was 
mistreating Albanians in Kosovo. The investigation uncovered a 
wide range of unethical practices, including smuggling and sur- 
veillance of Tito himself. Tito purged the secret police, and Rankov- 
ic was forced to resign (see Internal Security, ch. 5). But he 
remained the champion of Serbian nationalist groups, particular- 
ly on the issue of Kosovo. 

After the defeat of the conservatives and adoption of additional 
party reforms, the party central organization lost its predominant 
position. Republic and province party leaders blocked action taken 
in Belgrade and gained control of party appointments, thus shift- 
ing the focus of party loyalty away from the center. New election 
laws brought direct multicandidate elections, often won by candi- 
dates who lacked party approval. 

Party discipline softened when the ascendant liberals continued 
to argue that the LCY should influence rather than direct self- 
management decision making. The press and universities grew into 
centers of debate on an expanding list of taboo issues. Beginning 
in 1968, a group of intellectuals in Zagreb and Belgrade, known 
collectively as the Praxis circle, circulated unorthodox interpreta- 
tions of Marx, supported student demonstrations, and criticized 
the rigidity of party positions. Despite official efforts to suppress 
it, the Praxis circle flourished and spoke out until 1975. 

In 1968 attention moved back to foreign policy. Student unrest 
subsided, and Yugoslav-Soviet relations again sagged after War- 
saw Pact nations invaded Czechoslovakia in August 1968. Tito, 


Historical Setting 

who had traveled to Prague before the invasion to lend support 
to Alexander Dubcek's program of "socialism with a human face," 
denounced the invasion, and Moscow and Belgrade exchanged bit- 
ter criticism. The Yugoslavs warned that they would resist a Soviet 
invasion of their country, and Tito established a civil defense or- 
ganization capable of mobilizing the entire country in such an event 
(see National Defense, ch. 5). 

The quiet that the invasion of Czechoslovakia brought to the 
Yugoslav domestic scene was broken in November 1968 when ethnic 
Albanians in Kosovo and western Macedonia staged violent demon- 
strations to demand equality and republic status for Kosovo. 
Demonstrations and violent incidents continued through 1969. 
Among broad government concessions to the ethnic Albanians, a 
1968 constitutional amendment allowed local economic and social 
planning and financial control in Kosovo. Serbian and Montene- 
grin intellectuals condemned the upgrading of Kosovo's status and 
accurately predicted that Albanian abuses would increase Serbian 
emigration from Kosovo. The creation of the separate Macedoni- 
an Orthodox Church and rising Muslim nationalism in Bosnia also 
irritated Serbian churchmen and intellectuals during this period. 

After tough political bargaining, the Federal Assembly adopted 
constitutional amendments in 1971 that transformed Yugoslavia 
into a loose federation. The amendments limited federal govern- 
ment responsibilities to defense, foreign affairs, maintenance of a 
unified Yugoslav market, common monetary and foreign-trade poli- 
cies, the self-management system, and ethnic and civil rights. The 
republics and provinces gained primary control over all other func- 
tions and a de facto veto power over federal decisions. 

Unrest in Croatia and Its Consequences in the 1970s 

Political, economic, and cultural tensions in the late 1960s sharply 
increased nationalist feeling in Croatia. In 1967 Croatian intellec- 
tuals, including Miroslav Krleza, the most respected literary figure 
in Croatia, signed a statement denying the validity of Serbo- 
Croatian as a historical language and promoting Croatian as a dis- 
tinct language. The ensuing polemics escalated into a conflict over 
discrimination. Croatian historians recalled exploitation of Croa- 
tia by the Serb-dominated prewar government, and Croatian 
economists complained of disproportionate levies on Croatia for 
the federal budget and development fund. Party leaders in Zagreb 
won popularity by defending the economic interests of the repub- 
lic, and nationalist leadership groups, including Matica Hrvatska, 
Croatia's oldest cultural society, began calling for constitutional 
changes to give the republic virtual independence. In November 



Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

197 1 , university students went on strike, and demonstrators marched 
through the streets. Tito pressed Croatian party leaders to quiet the 
nationalists, but the unrest continued. Finally, police and sol- 
diers arrested hundreds of student leaders. The authorities disbanded 
Matica Hrvatska and purged ' 'nationalists' ' and liberals from all 
Croatian organizations and institutions. 

The rise of nationalism halted the liberal movement in the na- 
tional party. Tito called for stricter adherence to democratic cen- 
tralism and proclaimed that the LCY would remain the binding 
political force of Yugoslavia and that the party could not decentral- 
ize without endangering the country's integrity. He also called for 
the party to reassume its leading role and reestablish its control over 
the country's political and economic life. Through 1972 Tito over- 
came unprecedented local defiance to purge reformist party leaders 
in Serbia, Slovenia, Macedonia, and Vojvodina. He replaced them 
in most instances with antireform party veterans who had displayed 
less political talent than their predecessors but were considered more 
reliable politically. In 1974 the Tenth Party Congress elected Tito 
party president for life and proclaimed that Yugoslav "self-managed 
socialism" would remain under firm party control. The leadership 
muzzled the press, arrested dissidents, pressured universities to fire 
outspoken professors, and redoubled efforts to promote Tito's cult 
of personality. 

The 1974 Constitution 

In 1974 the government enacted a new Constitution, one of the 
world's longest, which created new representative bodies and a com- 
plex system of checks and balances, designed to enhance party power 
and limit the influence of professional enterprise managers. The new 
Constitution replaced direct election of representatives to legislative 
bodies, substituting a complex system of indirect elections by 
delegates representing associated labor, sociopolitical organizations, 
and local citizens in general. The leadership heralded the new sys- 
tem as "direct workers' democracy," but the mechanism actually 
allowed the central party leadership greater control of the Federal 
Assembly and republic and local assemblies. Despite recent nation- 
alist unrest and conservative backlash, the Constitution retained the 
1971 amendments that shifted power from the federal government 
to the republics. 

In his last years, Tito virtually ignored worsening economic con- 
ditions and worked domestically to strengthen collective leadership 
and prevent a single individual or group from accumulating exces- 
sive power. In foreign affairs, Cuba threatened Yugoslav leader- 
ship of the Nonaligned Movement by pushing the movement toward 


Gathering of world dignitaries for President 
Tito's funeral, May 1980 
Courtesy United Press International 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

a pro-Soviet position at the 1979 Conference of Nonaligned Na- 
tions in Havana. Tito condemned the Soviet invasion of Af- 
ghanistan that year. Despite the weakening of the Nonaligned 
Movement by the influence of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, in the 
1970s Yugoslavia largely succeeded in maintaining friendly rela- 
tions with all states, regardless of their political and economic sys- 
tems. Tito died on May 4, 1980, and Yugoslavia's collective 
presidency assumed full control in a smooth transition. Most Yu- 
goslavs genuinely mourned the loss of their longtime leader, who 
had been their country's strongest unifying force. The presence 
of forty-nine international leaders at his funeral showed the wide 
respect that Tito had gained around the world. 

In 1980 Yugoslavia entered a new era after the death of the most 
effective leader the South Slavic nation had ever had. The history 
of the country had featured division much more prominendy than 
unification; over the centuries, the constituent parts of the modern 
Yugoslav state had alternated between independence, federation 
with other states, and domination by larger powers. Each of the 
republics of the modern federation underwent its own historical 
and cultural development, very often in conflict with the territori- 
al or political goals of its Slavic and non-Slavic neighbors. Although 
the South Slavic state was a longtime dream of many, initial ef- 
forts to establish such a state were very problematic. After two dis- 
astrous world wars, the nation held together in a relatively calm 
period of development, but after Tito the threat of economic and 
political disharmony again appeared. 

* * * 

There is a wealth of informative, well-written English-language 
sources on the history of Yugoslavia and its many peoples. An ex- 
cellent short work is Fred Singleton's A Short History of the Yugoslav 
Peoples. Black Lamb and Grey Falcon by Rebecca West is a classic popu- 
lar history and personal memoir of a tour through Yugoslavia on 
the eve of World War II. Robert Lee Wolffs The Balkans in Our 
Time describes the emergence of Yugoslavia and the other Balkan 
countries and their development to the postwar period. An excel- 
lent study of Yugoslav foreign policy of the 1920s and 1930s is 
J.B. Hoptner's Yugoslavia in Crisis, 1934-1941. The works of Fran- 
cis Dvornik on the migrations, conversion, and cultural develop- 
ment of the Slavs devote considerable attention to the Slovenes, 
Croats, Serbs, and Bulgars. Two excellent examinations of post- 
war Yugoslavia development are Dennison Rusinow's The Yugoslav 


Historical Setting 

Experiment, 1948-1974 and Conflict and Cohesion in Socialist Yugosla- 
via by Steven L. Burg. (For further information and complete ci- 
tations, see Bibliography.) 


Chapter 2. The Society and Its Environment 



Folk dancers 


THE MANY FACETS of the ethnic lens through which Yugo- 
slavs view the universe have magnified the divisions in Yugoslav 
society and obscured its few unifying elements. The obvious cul- 
tural and economic contrasts were only the starting point of differ- 
ences that existed on many levels. In the alpine north, baroque 
Catholic altars reflected Slovenia's cultural affinity with Austria 
and Italy, but modern glass-and-steel skyscrapers revealed Slove- 
nia's aspirations toward a role in modern Europe. In the Balkan 
south, the ancient stone churches of Macedonia reflected a rich 
Byzantine tradition, while acute poverty and a low literacy rate 
were part of the legacy of Ottoman domination that had insulated 
Macedonians from the influences of the Renaissance, the Enlight- 
enment, and the Industrial Revolution. The forces of war and ex- 
ternal threat bound Slovenia, Macedonia, and the patchwork of 
cultures between them into a single country, but they allowed scant 
opportunity for consideration of how ethnic differences could be 

Despite the ethnic and cultural cleavages that continued to di- 
vide Yugoslavia in 1990, the country made great social progress 
after World War II. On the eve of the war, Yugoslavia was a back- 
ward, predominantly peasant land with a few developing basic in- 
dustries mostly located in its northern regions. Paved roads were 
rare, schools few, and almost half the people illiterate. Infectious 
disease was frequent, infant mortality was very high, doctors were 
few, and hygiene, medical facilities, and child care were poor, es- 
pecially in rural areas. The strong kinship ties that undergirded 
society were the only social welfare system available to most peo- 
ple. Meanwhile, rural overpopulation fragmented landholding, and 
poverty frayed the fabric of the family. While educated citizens in 
the northern cities might watch ancient Greek drama in theaters, 
many of their compatriots in the southern mountains actually lived 
according to Homeric traditions of blood vengeance: buying, sell- 
ing, and stealing brides; practicing rituals of blood brotherhood; 
and reciting epic poems to the music of a crude single-string in- 

Before World War II, Yugoslavia's small upper class was com- 
posed of a Serb-dominated bureaucracy and military and a few 
professionals, entrepreneurs, and artisans. Like the Habsburg and 
Ottoman domination of earlier centuries, the Serbian hegemony 
established after World War I frustrated the autonomy of the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

country's other major nationalities. Preoccupation with issues of 
nationalism prevented effective solutions to the country's grave so- 
cial problems. Animosities among the Yugoslav peoples exploded 
in civn^war after the Nazis occupied the country in 1941. World 
War II claimed 1.7 million Yugoslav lives and inflicted deep wounds 
on all national psyches. Atrocities were committed by all sides, and 
more thaSi half of Yugoslavia's war dead were killed by other Yu- 

After World War II, Yugoslavia's communist government 
promoted the slogan Brotherhood and Unity and moved energeti- 
cally to smooth over ethnic antagonisms. Josip Broz Tito and his 
revolutionary regime eradicated wartime collaborators along with 
many innocents, ousted what remained of the old Serb-dominated 
elite, nationalized private property, and established a new party- 
based governing class. Membership in the wartime Partisans (see 
Glossary), rather than competence or education, became the key 
to a successful career. The new government, led by a ruling circle 
steeped in Marxism and Leninism, undertook radical steps to 
modernize the country: first reconstruction, then rapid industri- 
alization. Modernization continued apace after the Yugoslav com- 
munists ended their alliance with the Soviet Union in 1948 and 
introduced socialist self- management, a unique version of social- 
ism. Thousands of peasants migrated to urban areas in the decade 
following World War II. Patriarchal extended families broke down 
at an accelerated rate, and women began to find jobs and a new 
identity outside the home. New schools and hospitals opened, and 
universities began training teachers, doctors, and engineers. 

Although Yugoslavia's economy expanded rapidly, by the 
mid-1960s it could not absorb the large number of individuals 
emerging from the education system. Tito opened the borders to 
emigration, and within a decade about a million Yugoslavs had 
left to take jobs in Western Europe. Massive capital redistribution 
from relatively rich northerly regions to the less-developed south 
did not mitigate the huge differences in development between them. 
The economic downturn of the late 1970s and 1980s slowed the 
entry of qualified individuals into the working and managing classes. 
In the 1970s, the northern republics began to complain about the 
contributions to development in the southern regions mandated 
by the central government. An entrenched bureaucracy sabotaged 
economic and social reforms in the 1970s and 1980s, and by the 
late 1 980s economic and political stagnation had eroded many of 
the earlier improvements in Yugoslavia's standard of living. As 
the concept of the centrally planned economy waned throughout 
Eastern Europe, Yugoslavia turned to the West, causing further 


The Society and Its Environment 

tension between tradition and change. In 1990 political victories 
by noncommunist parties in Slovenia and Croatia promised a fresh 
approach to old and new social tensions and regional disparities. 
Such changes portended a complete restructuring of the Yugoslav 

Geography and Population 

Varied and often breathtaking, Yugoslavia's landscape allows 
outside access to the country from virtually every direction, but 
it seriously hampers internal movement from one region to the next. 
Throughout history, Yugoslavia's topography has exposed the coun- 
try to foreign invaders, frustrated internal commerce and political 
cohesion, and preserved the extraordinarily complex ethnic mosaic 
created by successive invasions and migrations. The ruggedness 
of their terrain is one reason Yugoslavs have often won renown 
as soldiers but seldom as merchants. 


Rugged mountains dominate the 255,804 square kilometers of 
Yugoslavia. Mountains separate the fertile inland plain from a nar- 
row, rocky Adriatic coasdine. Yugoslavia's three main mountainous 
regions occupy about 60 percent of its territory. The Julian Alps 
of Slovenia, an extension of the Italian and Austrian alps, include 
Yugoslavia's highest peaks. The Dinaric Alps rise dramatically 
along the entire 1,500-kilometer Adriatic coast. Finally, spurs ex- 
tend southward from the Carpathian and Balkan mountains through 
Serbia from the Danube River's Iron Gate near the Romanian- 
Bulgarian border, intersecting with the Dinaric Alps in Macedo- 
nia (see Drainage Systems, this ch.). 

The composition of Yugoslavia's mountains varies. The Dinar- 
ic Alps, like the offshore Adriatic islands, are chiefly cracked lime- 
stone strata that form long valleys and contain topographical oddities 
such as magnificent caves, disappearing rivers, and a freshwater 
lake (on the north Adriatic island of Cres) deeper than the Adriat- 
ic seabed. In some areas east of the coast, erosion of the limestone 
has exposed the crystalline rock outlayers of the Rhodope Massif, 
which is the primeval core of the Balkan Peninsula. From Bosnia 
southeastward, areas of crystalline rock are interspersed with allu- 
vial sedimentary rock. Serbia's mountains contain a variety of rock 
types, including volcanic rock and exposed crystalline formations. 
Geological fault lines in southern Yugoslavia have caused occasional 
earthquakes; the most serious in recent times killed over 1 ,000 peo- 
ple at Skopje in 1963. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

North and west of Belgrade are the Pannonian Plains, which 
include all of the Serbian province of Vojvodina. These plains were 
the floor of a huge inland sea during the Tertiary period (65 mil- 
lion to 2.5 million years ago). Here eons of sedimentary and wind- 
blown deposits have created layers of fertile soil that are over 160 
meters deep in some places. 

Yugoslavia possesses about 1 ,500 kilometers of convoluted Adri- 
atic coastline, not including its many islands. From the coast, ac- 
cess inland is easiest through four passages. The Postojna Gate, 
used for millennia by merchants and armies crossing between the 
Adriatic and Central Europe, is Yugoslavia's northernmost pas- 
sage through the coastal mountains. Farther south, the Neretva 
River is a centuries-old trading link between the Adriatic and Bos- 
nia. Below the Neretva, the Gulf of Kotor is a spectacular fjord 
long considered a strategic port. Finally, the port of Bar connects 
with the interior of Montenegro and Serbia by means of the 
Belgrade-Bar Railroad, giving Serbia access to the Adriatic. 

Drainage Systems 

The Pannonian Plains are drained by the Danube and its four 
major tributaries, the Drava, Tisa (Hungarian spelling Tisza), 
Sava, and Morava (see fig. 6). The Danube, extremely wide and 
deep at some points, varies gready between high- and low- water 
seasons. The former is from March or April until May or June, 
the latter from mid-July to late October. The Danube also drains 
the interior highlands. The Vardar River and its tributaries drain 
the southeastern region into the Aegean Sea, and the Neretva drains 
the south-central region into the Adriatic. The western alpine slopes 
parallel to the coast are drained into the Adriatic by surface and 
underground streams. Underground streams are formed when 
water seeps through the limestone of the alps into channels, then 
empties into the Adriatic below its surface. 


Yugoslavia lies in the southern half of the northern temperate 
zone, but the climate of its mountains, interior plain, and seacoast 
varies dramatically according to elevation, prevailing winds, and 
distance from the sea. The mountain regions fall under the influence 
of continental air currents and Mediterranean air masses. Snow 
blankets most of the highlands during the winter, but temperature 
and precipitation differ with elevation. For example, Montenegro's 
capital, Titograd (elevation 210 meters) enjoys an average monthly 
temperature ten degrees warmer than that of Cetinje (3,530 meters), 
which is only 40 kilometers to the west; and Crkvica (5,776 meters), 



Figure 6. Topography and Drainage 


The Society and Its Environment 

a town 32 kilometers north of Cetinje, averages 4,623 millimeters 
of annual rainfall, three times more than Titograd. The interior 
plain has a continental climate featuring hot, humid summers. A 
dry wind, the KoSava, brings freezing air from central Eurasia in 
the winter, but snowfall is usually light. The Dalmatian coast en- 
joys mild Mediterranean weather. Summers on the coast are hot 
and dry with turquoise blue skies; a fair sea breeze, the Maestral, 
cools the land during mornings and afternoons. Winters are cool 
and rainy. A chilling winter wind known as the Bura sweeps down 
through gaps in the coastal mountains; and a southwest wind, the 
Jugo, brings winter rains. Warm winds blow up the Vardar Val- 
ley from the Aegean into Macedonia, making subtropical agricul- 
ture possible in some parts of that republic. 


After World War II, industrialization and urban development 
progressed rapidly in Yugoslavia. As in other East European coun- 
tries, the environmental effects of such growth went unrecognized 
for many years. In the 1980s, a constitutional amendment and 
numerous environmental protection laws were passed, but they had 
little initial effect on pollution of the air, soil, and water. A small 
green movement struggled to bring the problem onto the political 
agenda, but it had achieved litde political influence as of 1990. Yu- 
goslavia's air suffered from sulfur dioxide pollution caused by ve- 
hicle emissions, trash fires, and the burning of high-sulfur lignite 
(soft coal) in power plants and home heating units. Oil spills fre- 
quently appeared on the Sava River; dangerous levels of phenol 
in the Ibar River occasionally required the town of Kraljevo to shut 
off its water supply; and the artificial lake above the Djerdap 
Hydroelectric Station on the Danube was referred to as the dump 
of Europe. Nuclear waste from Yugoslavia's only nuclear electric 
plant, at KrSko in Slovenia (a main target of the green movement), 
had almost filled its subterranean nuclear waste storage facilities 
in 1990. Deforestation increased soil erosion problems, and mounds 
of trash littered the roadsides in most eastern and southern rural 


Yugoslavia's resident population was estimated at 23.4 million 
people in 1987, up from 15.7 million in 1948 and 22.4 million in 
1981 . In addition, over a million Yugoslavs lived and worked for 
long periods of time in other European countries. The country's 
population density grew from 62 persons per square kilometer in 
1948 to 92 per square kilometer in 1988. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Between 1961 and 1981, Yugoslavia's annual population growth 
(1.0 percent) was about the same as that of the world's developed 
countries. By 1990, the rate had dropped to 0.6 percent. The popu- 
lation growth rare in Yugoslavia's economically less-developed 
regions, however, was significantly higher than that in the devel- 
oped regions. For example, in 1986 the respective annual growth 
rates of Kosovo and Macedonia were 2.5 percent and 1.5 percent. 
By comparison, the respective rates in industrialized Vojvodina 
and Slovenia were only 0.5 percent and 0.9 percent. The annual 
growth rate of the country's working-age population was 1.3 per- 
cent, indicating that an increasing proportion of that group was 
found in the less developed regions. 

The average age of Yugoslavia's population in 1986 was 33.9 
years. Men averaged 32.6 years of age; women, 35.1. The aver- 
age age of the Yugoslav population increased over the last half cen- 
tury because the birth rate declined and life expectancy increased 
over that period (see table 2; table 3, Appendix). Between the 1921 
and 1981 censuses, the Yugoslav population as a whole moved from 
the demographic category of population maturity toward the oldest 
category, demographic old age. The demographic aging of the 
population varied in different parts of the country, however, and 
in 1981 Yugoslavia's republics and provinces fit into different 
categories of demographic aging. The populations of Vojvodina, 
Serbia proper (see Glossary), and Croatia were in demographic 
old age; those in Montenegro and Slovenia were on the threshold 
of demographic old age; those in Bosnia and Hercegovina and 
Macedonia had reached demographic maturity; the population of 
Kosovo, however, was still in demographic youth. 

Life expectancy began to increase in 1918, lengthening from about 
35 years to 67.8 years for men and 73.5 years for women in 1982. 
After World War II, the mortality rate in Yugoslavia declined pre- 
cipitously. In 1984 the country had a mortality rate of about 9.3 
per thousand, down from 12.8 per thousand in 1947. In Kosovo the 
mortality rate dropped from 13 per thousand in 1947 to 5.8 in 1984, 
while in Slovenia it dropped from 13.5 to 10.9 per thousand. 

Yugoslavia's infant mortality rate, a key indicator of a popula- 
tion's social, economic, health care, and cultural levels, dropped 
from 1 18.6 infant deaths per thousand births in 1950 to 28.9 per 
thousand in 1984. In 1984 Vojvodina (12.0 infant deaths per thou- 
sand births), Slovenia (15.7), and Croatia (15.8) reported Yugo- 
slavia's lowest infant mortality rates, while Kosovo (63.1) and 
Macedonia (49.5) reported the highest. In spite of higher living stan- 
dards and health care, however, in 1985 Yugoslavia's infant mor- 
tality rate ranked only above Albania among European countries. 


The Society and Its Environment 

In Slovenia, Croatia, Vojvodina, and Serbia proper, birth rates 
declined together with the mortality rate. But in Bosnia and Her- 
cegovina, Macedonia, and Montenegro, a rapid drop in the birth 
rate came only after 1960, while Kosovo's birth rate dropped only 
slightly through 1990. By 1980 the population explosion among 
Kosovo's ethnic Albanians had become Yugoslavia's most press- 
ing demographic problem. Between 1950 and 1983, the popula- 
tion of Kosovo grew by about 220 percent, while the Yugoslav total 
increased by only 39 percent. Kosovo's high annual birth rate (about 
29 births per thousand in 1988, the highest in Europe) and the in- 
creased life expectancy of the population spurred this demograph- 
ic growth. Although Kosovo's birth rate declined somewhat during 
the 1980s, the absolute number of births increased while the mor- 
tality rate declined. By 1980 Kosovo had become the most densely 
populated part of Yugoslavia (146 persons per square kilometer), 
although it remained the country's least-developed region. 

In the mid-1960s, the government began actively supporting 
family planning practices to control population growth. In 1969 
the Federal Assembly (SkupStina) passed a liberalized abortion law. 
At the same time, the government passed a resolution on family 
planning that urged expansion of free programs in family plan- 
ning and modern contraceptive techniques. The resolution also em- 
phasized the role of the social services and other national institutions 
in sex education and planned parenthood. After 1969 the obvious 
failure of family planning in Kosovo produced calls for greater dis- 
semination of birth control information and devices and establish- 
ment of family planning counseling services. The winning party 
in Croatia's 1990 republican elections, however, ran on a platform 
that called for banning abortion. The party's victory raised the pos- 
sibility of antiabortion legislation in that republic. 

Yugoslavia's Peoples 

Modern Yugoslavia had its genesis in a nineteenth-century 
Romantic idea that the South Slavs, chiefly the Serbs, Croats, Slo- 
venes, and Bulgars, should be united in a single independent state. 
Except for the existence of an independent Bulgaria, the Yugosla- 
via created after World War I was a virtual realization of this idea. 
With the creation of the South Slav state, however, the Yugoslavs 
had to face the fact that besides similar languages, similar ancient 
ethnic roots, and the shared experience of foreign oppression, they 
had rather little in common. 

Ethnographic History 

The South Slavs lived for centuries on two sides of a disputed 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

border between the Eastern and Western Roman Empires, between 
the Eastern Orthodox and the Roman Catholic churches, between 
the Islamic crescent and the Christian cross. Those on the Eastern 
side (today's Serbs, Montenegrins, Muslim Slavs, and Macedo- 
nians) had lived under Byzantine and Turkish influence; those on 
the Western side (the Slovenes and Croats) had lived under the 
religious authority of Rome and the secular authority of Vienna, 
Budapest, and Venice. Besides the South Slavs, the Yugoslav state 
contained a melange of minority peoples, many of them non-Slavic, 
who professed different religions, spoke different languages, and 
had different and often conflicting historical assumptions and 
desires. With over twenty-five distinct nationalities, Yugoslavia had 
one of the most complex ethnic profiles in Europe. Over seventy 
years after Yugoslavia's creation in 1918, serious doubts remained 
that a federation of such disparate elements could continue as an 
integrated state. 

The Constitution of 1974 divided the country's ethnic groups 
into two categories: nations (see Glossary), or ethnic groups whose 
traditional territorial homelands lay within the country's modern 
boundaries, and nationalities, or ethnic groups whose traditional 
homelands lay outside those boundaries. The Yugoslav nations were 
the Croats, Macedonians, Montenegrins, Muslim Slavs, Serbs, and 
Slovenes (see fig. 7). Yugoslavia's main nationalities were the Al- 
banians, Bulgars, Czechs, Hungarians, Italians, Romanians, 
Ruthenians, Slovaks, Turks, and Ukrainians (see table 4, Appen- 
dix). Other nationalities included the Austrians, Germans, Greeks, 
Gypsies, Jews, Poles, Russians, and Vlachs (a Romanian group). 
The other nationalities besides these totaled less than 0.1 percent 
of the country's population and did not enjoy special constitution- 
al status as nationalities; as individuals, however, they were enti- 
ded to the same rights and freedoms guaranteed all other Yugoslavs 
in the national Constitution. 

Ethnic Composition 

Serbs constituted more than a third of the total population in 
the 1981 census. They were followed by the Croats (19.7 percent), 
Muslim Slavs (8.9 percent), Slovenes (7.8 percent), Albanians (7.7 
percent), Macedonians (6.0 percent), Montenegrins (2.6 percent), 
and Hungarians (1.9 percent). In the 1981 census, about 1.2 mil- 
lion people, or 5.4 percent of the country's population, declared 
themselves to be ethnic Yugoslavs, a fourfold increase since 1971 . 
Yugoslav scholars disagree about the reason for this rise in avowed 
Yugoslavism. Demographers have attributed the increase to an up- 
swing in popular identification with Yugoslavia as a state following 


The Society and Its Environment 

the death of Tito in 1980 and to minority group members declar- 
ing themselves Yugoslav nationals. Given the national tensions of 
the late 1980s, analysts eagerly awaited the 1991 census for new 
trends in Yugoslav national identification. 

Yugoslavia's overall ethnic makeup did not change drastically 
in the seventy years after the country was founded, despite the fact 
that the population grew by more than 70 percent during that time. 
Exceptions to this pattern of stability were the marked increase of 
the Albai . n population and a steep decline in the numbers of Jews, 
ethnic Germans, and Hungarians after World War II. 

Most of Yugoslavia's six republics and two provinces showed 
significant ethnic diversity. Only Serbia proper, Slovenia, and Mon- 
tenegro were largely homogeneous. Croatia had a substantial Ser- 
bian minority of nearly 12 percent. Macedonia had Turks, Vlachs, 
and a fast-growing Albanian population. Muslim Slavs, Serbs, and 
Croats made up the population of Bosnia and Hercegovina, bu* 
no single group predominated. Kosovo was predominantly Alba- 
nian with Serbian, Montenegrin, and Muslim Slav minorities; and 
a Serbian majority shared Vojvodina with Hungarians (at 19 per- 
cent, the largest minority in that province), Croats, and many less 
numerous groups (see table 5, Appendix). 

Complicating the ethnic situation was the fact that most nation- 
alities were not confined within the borders of the country's repub- 
lics, provinces, or districts (opstine, the next largest jurisdiction). 
For example, in 1981 about 98 percent of all Yugoslavia's Slovenes 
lived in Slovenia, and about 96 percent of its Macedonians lived 
in Macedonia; but only 60 percent of the Serbs lived in Serbia 
proper, and only 70 percent of the Montenegrins lived in Mon- 
tenegro. In the postwar era, the share of a republic's population 
that belonged to that republic's dominant national group general- 
ly declined. Thus, in Slovenia, where Slovenes accounted for 98 
percent of the population in 1948, they accounted for only about 
90 percent in 1981. 

Yugoslavia's federal and republican constitutions guarantee equal 
rights for all ethnic groups, including the right to participate in 
public life, government, and the armed forces. Minority national- 
ities have the right to organize groups to exercise their cultural rights 
and promote their national interests. Article 1 19 of the federal crimi- 
nal code, however, prohibits propaganda and other activities aimed 
at inciting or fomenting national, racial, or religious intolerance, 
hatred, or dissension between nations and nationalities. The federal 
and republican constitutions also provide for proportional represen- 
tation of the nations and nationalities in assemblies, commissions, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Figure 7. Ethnic Groups 

the highest levels of the army's officer corps, and other govern- 
ment institutions. 


According to the 1974 Constitution, the three official languages 
of Yugoslavia were Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, and Macedonian. 
Serbo-Croatian has an eastern and a western variant; it is written 
in the Latin alphabet in Croatia and in the Cyrillic alphabet (see 
Glossary) in Serbia and Montenegro (see fig. 8). Both alphabets 
are used in Bosnia and Hercegovina. Ironically, the Croatian liter- 
ary variant is closer to the language spoken by most Serbs and Mon- 
tenegrins than to that spoken by most Croats. Like Serbo-Croatian, 
Slovenian, which uses the Latin alphabet, became a literary lan- 
guage in the nineteenth century. Macedonian, which has elements 


The Society and Its Environment 

of both Bulgarian and Serbo-Croatian, obtained a standardized 
Cyrillic-based alphabet and orthography only after World War II. 

In order of usage, Yugoslavia's most significant minority lan- 
guages included Albanian, Hungarian, Turkish, Bulgarian, Roma- 
nian, Italian, Vlach, Czech, Slovak, Ruthenian, and Romany, the 
language of the Gypsies. The Constitution guaranteed members 
of the nationalities the right to use their own language and alphabet, 
including the right to use it in public affairs and in addressing 
government agencies. The nationalities also received the option 
of education in their native language through high school or voca- 
tional school (see Education, this ch.). Children attending such 
schools were required to study one of the three official Yugoslav 
languages. In 1990 the government of Serbia filled a gap in this 
guarantee by opening the first Romany-language primary school 
in the world. In the 1970s, the government eliminated the require- 
ment that schoolchildren study a second official Yugoslav language; 
this change caused a steep drop in the number of Slovenian and 
Albanian students who learned Serbo-Croatian and threatened to 
isolate some Slovenian and Albanian communities. 

The Yugoslav Nations 

In 1990 national identity remained a vital characteristic in Yu- 
goslavia, and distrust across ethnic boundaries persisted. Second 
only to the government bureaucracy, nationalism and ethnically 
based discrimination provided the universal explanation for all evils 
befalling the Yugoslav peoples. Kosovan Albanians complained that 
Macedonians purposely built their province's roads badly; Serbs 
complained that the Slovenes exploited their economy and that they 
were the victims of plotting Croats, Slovenes, and Islamic-funda- 
mentalist ethnic Albanians; Croats and Slovenes feared Serbian 
domination and complained of the lack of discipline of their fellow 
Yugoslavs to the south. 

The deepest and oldest national rivalry in Yugoslavia was the 
one between the Serbs and Croats, who despite their shared lan- 
guage possessed different social and value systems and political cul- 
tures. Two sayings illustrated these animosities and the essential 
difference in the inherited political styles of both peoples. The first 
says: The very way of life of a Serb and Croat is a deliberate provo- 
cation by each to the other. The second, a self-complimentary Ser- 
bian stereotype, says: In a conflict with authority, the Serb reaches 
for the sword and the Croat for his pen. The Serbian stereotype 
refers to the tradition of the hajduk, the idealized mountain renegade 
who responded violently to the oppressive anarchy of the Ottoman 
Empire during its last two centuries; the Croatian stereotype reflects 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Figure 8. Principal Languages and Religions 

the cultural influence of responding through the legal system to 
the Habsburgs' highly bureaucratized infringements on national 
and individual freedoms in Croatia. 


The demographic distribution and ethnic outlook of the Serbs 
exerted paramount influence on the shape of the modern Yugo- 
slav state from the very beginning. The Serbs were Yugoslavia's 
most populous and most dispersed nationality. Although concen- 
trated in Serbia proper, in 1981 they also accounted for substan- 
tial portions of the population of Kosovo (13.2 percent), Vojvodina 
(54.4 percent), Croatia (11.5 percent), and Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina (32.0 percent). Historically, the first cause of this scattering 
was the severe oppression of Serbs under Ottoman occupation, 


The Society and Its Environment 

which led to migration to the unoccupied territory to the west. Af- 
ter World War II, Yugoslavia's first communist government tried 
to define the country's postwar federal units to limit the Serbian 
domination believed largely responsible for the political turmoil 
of the interwar period. This meant reducing Serbia proper to 
achieve political recognition of Macedonian and Montenegrin ethnic 
individuality and the mixed populations of Vojvodina, Kosovo, 
and Bosnia and Hercegovina (see Formation of the South Slav State, 
ch. 1). 

The Serbs' forefathers built a rich kingdom during the thirteenth 
and fourteenth centuries, then suffered under Ottoman occupa- 
tion for 370 years (1459-1829). During the Ottoman era, the Ser- 
bian Orthodox Church preserved the Serbs' sense of nationhood 
and reinforced the collective memory of past glory. The church 
canonized medieval Serbian kings; fresco painters preserved their 
images; and priests recited a litany of their names at daily masses. 
Until the nineteenth century, virtually all Serbs were peasants; the 
small percentage that lived in towns as traders and craftsmen wore 
Turkish costume and lived a Turkish life-style. Until the twentieth 
century, peasant Serbs lived mainly in extended families, with four 
or five nuclear families residing in the same house. An elder 
managed the household and property (see The Family, this ch.). 

The independence movement of the nineteenth century brought 
significant cultural changes to the Serbs. During that century, the 
scholars Dositej Obradovic and Vuk Karadzic overcame stiff op- 
position from the Orthodox Church to foster creation of the modern 
Serbian literary language, which is based on the speech of the or- 
dinary people. Karadzic adapted the Cyrillic alphabet to create the 
form still used in Yugoslavia. 

After World War I, the Serbs considered themselves the libera- 
tors of Croatia and Slovenia — nations whose loyalty the Serbs found 
suspect because they had seemed unwilling or unable to rise against 
Austria-Hungary in the independence struggles that preceded 
World War I. The Serbian political elite of the interwar Kingdom 
of Yugoslavia was extremely centralist and accustomed to wield- 
ing unshared power. On the eve of World War II, the Yugoslav 
army officer corps and the civilian bureaucracy were dominated 
by Serbs (2 Croats and 2 Slovenes were generals; the other 161 
generals were either Serbs or Montenegrins). Serbian hegemony 
in interwar Yugoslavia triggered a militant backlash in Croatia, 
Macedonia, and Kosovo; during World War II, Croatian nation- 
alist fanatics butchered Serbs, Jews, and Gypsies with a brutal- 
ity that appalled even the Nazis (see Partition and Terror, ch. 1). 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

The Serbs' memories of their medieval kingdom, their 1389 
defeat by the Ottoman Turks, their nineteenth-century uprisings, 
and their heavy sacrifices during twentieth-century wars contributed 
significantly to their feeling that they had sacrificed much for Yu- 
goslavia and received relatively little in return. In the late 1980s, 
a passionate Serbian nationalist revival arose from this sense of un- 
fulfilled expectation, from the postwar distribution of the Serbs 
among various Yugoslav political entities, and from perceived dis- 
crimination against the Serbs in Kosovo in the 1970s and 1980s 
(see Serbia, ch. 4). In this process, the Serbian Orthodox Church 
reemerged as a strong cultural influence, and the government of 
Serbia renewed celebrations of the memories of Serbian heroes and 
deeds. These events caused leaders in Slovenia and Croatia to fear 
a resurgence of the Serbian hegemony that had disrupted inter- 
war Yugoslavia (see Regional Political Issues, ch. 4). 

The Serbian- Albanian struggle for Kosovo, the heartland of Ser- 
bia's medieval kingdom, dominated Serbia's political life and cate 
conversation in the 1980s. Between 1948 and 1990, the Serbian 
share of Kosovo's population dropped from 23.6 percent to less 
than 10 percent, while the ethnic Albanian share increased in 
proportion because of a high birth rate and immigration from Al- 
bania. The demographic change was also the result of political and 
economic conditions; the postwar Serbian exodus from Kosovo 
accelerated in 1966 after ethnic Albanian communist leaders gained 
control of the province, and Kosovo remained the most poverty- 
stricken region of Yugoslavia in spite of huge government invest- 
ments (see Regional Disparities, ch. 3; Kosovo, ch. 4). After 
reasserting political control over Kosovo in 1989, the Serbian 
government announced an ambitious program to resettle Serbs in 
Kosovo, but the plan attracted scant interest among Serbian emigres 
from the region. 

In the republics of Croatia and Bosnia and Hercegovina, the 
Serbs' situation was more complex and potentially more explosive 
than in Kosovo. Despite denials from the governments of both 
republics, Serbs in Croatia and Bosnia and Hercegovina complained 
bitterly in the late 1980s about ethnically based discrimination and 
threats. The Serbian government reacted with published exposes 
of World War II atrocities against Serbs and the Croatian chau- 
vinism that had inspired them. 


A robust mountain people with a warrior tradition, the Mon- 
tenegrins were the smallest in population of Yugoslavia's nations. 
In 1981 they made up 68.5 percent of Montenegro's population, 


The Society and Its Environment 

1.4 percent of Serbia proper's, 2.1 percent of Vojvodina's, and 
1 . 7 percent of Kosovo's. The Montenegrins and the Serbs shared 
strong political and cultural ties, including the Eastern Orthodox 
faith, the Cyrillic alphabet, the Serbo-Croatian language (differ- 
ent dialects), and a history of bloody struggle against the Ottoman 
Turks. Many historians maintain that the Montenegrins are Serbs. 
Montenegro's most renowned poet and ruler, the nineteenth- 
century bishop-prince Petar II NjegoS, considered himself a Serb; 
likewise, the founder of Serbia's medieval kingdom, Stefan I 
Nemanja, was born in Podgorica, now Titograd, capital of Mon- 

For centuries Montenegrin society was composed of patrilineal- 
ly related extended families organized into clans. The extended 
family tradition lasted well into the twentieth century. Loyalty to 
kin and protection of family honor were the paramount values. Civic 
responsibility was a foreign notion, and pragmatism was a sign of 
weakness. Scratching out a living in the remote, rocky hills, the 
Montenegrins stubbornly defended their independence against in- 
cursions by the Ottoman Turks. Personal tenacity and combat skills 
were the most valued male virtues; women tended the fields and 
livestock, maintained the home, nursed the wounded, and nourished 
the next generation of warriors. Stories of ancestral courage and 
honor were passed from one generation to the next by bards who 
recited epic poems to the accompaniment of agusle, a simple, single- 
string instrument. Practices such as bride theft and blood brother- 
hood were common, and blood vengeance survived late in the twen- 
tieth century. 

After World War I, political forces in Montenegro were deeply 
divided between the Greens, who supported an independent Mon- 
tenegro, and the Whites, who advocated unification with Serbia. 
The Whites prevailed, and in censuses taken during the interwar 
period Montenegrins were classified as Serbs. Montenegrins played 
a significant role in the defense forces of the interwar Kingdom 
of Yugoslavia. 

Montenegrins enlisted in the communist Partisans in large num- 
bers during World War II and were disproportionately repre- 
sented in the Communist Party of Yugoslavia (CPY) and the 
government after the war. Although a large number of Montene- 
grin communists were expelled from the CPY for pro-Soviet sym- 
pathies after Yugoslavia broke with the Soviet Union in 1948, 
Montenegrins remained overrepresented in the Yugoslav bureaucra- 
tic and military services. In the early 1970s, Montenegrins made 
up roughly 5 percent of the population. But about 15 percent of 
the leaders of federal administrative bodies were Montenegrins, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

nearly 20 percent of the generals in the Yugoslav People's Army 
(YPA) were Montenegrin, and their presence in the overall officer 
corps was also disproportionately high (see The Military and So- 
ciety, ch. 5). The Montenegrins' postwar loyalty to the CPY yielded 
plentiful development funds for their republic. For this reason, 
Montenegrin industries developed dramatically, although often 
without rational distribution of resources. Much investment was 
inordinately capital intensive and wasted, and the republic suffered 
from low prices for the raw materials it sold to other republics. 


The Croats, a people with long-frustrated national ambitions, 
have seen themselves for decades as cultured West Europeans shack- 
led to the backward Balkans. Yugoslavia's second most numerous 
ethnic group, the Croats accounted for 75.1 percent of Croatia's 
population, 18.4 percent of Bosnia and Hercegovina's, 1.4 per- 
cent of Montenegro's, 2.9 percent of Slovenia's, 0.5 percent of Ser- 
bia proper's, and 5.4 percent of Vojvodina's, according to the 1981 
census. Small enclaves of Croats were as far removed as Kosovo 
and Romania. As the 1990s began, however, the Republic of Croa- 
tia anticipated radical changes in its relations with the rest of Yu- 
goslavia potentially leading to the first independent Croatian state 
since medieval times. 

The Croats enjoyed their own medieval kingdom for several cen- 
turies before a long period of Hungarian rule from 1102 to 1918. 
Most Croats lived under Hungarian kings until 1526 and under 
Habsburg monarchs thereafter; the Croats of Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina and Slavonia lived under Ottoman rule for several hundred 
years; and the Croats of Dalmatia passed from Hungarian to Vene- 
tian to Austrian rule. With the help of Roman Catholic clerics, 
the Croats maintained a strong collective memory of their former 
statehood despite their centuries of foreign domination. Two pivotal 
events in the Croats' social development were the birth of modern 
Croatian national sentiment after a brief period of Napoleonic rule 
in the early nineteenth century and the emancipation of the serfs 
in 1848. Writers, scholars, merchants, and wealthy landowners led 
the Croatian national movement, which was triggered by resistance 
to Hungary's drive to impose Magyar (the national language of 
Hungary) as the language of public life in Croatia in the mid- 
nineteenth century (see The Croats and Their Territories, ch. 1). 

Before the 1848 revolution against the Austrian Empire, the 
Croats' social structure was rigidly stratified. The peasantry con- 
sisted of serfs bound to the land, semi-serfs who held land on con- 
dition of labor and other payments, and landless peasant-nobles. 


Croats in native costume, 
Smotra Folk Festival, Zagreb 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

At the end of the nineteenth century, only a very small proportion 
of Groatia's total population was employed in industry. The land- 
owner class kept the peasants uneducated to ensure easy exploita- 
tion. Among the peasants in Croatia, traditional extended families 
gradually gave way to individual family farms after the abolition 
of serfdom in the Austrian Empire in 1848, but rural overpopula- 
tion and land fragmentation brought hunger to many areas by the 
turn of the century. During the late 1800s, many Croats emigrat- 
ed to the Americas and Australia. 

After 1868 Croatian nationalists actively protested Hungary's 
Magyarization campaigns; later, between the world wars, they 
spoke against Serbian hegemony and for a loose Yugoslav federa- 
tion or complete independence for Croatia. During World War 
II, Hitler established a puppet fascist regime, run by the terrorist 
Ustase (see Glossary), to rule a greater Croatian state whose popu- 
lation was roughly half Serb. Substantial numbers of Croatian na- 
tionalists and clergy took part in this regime. The UstaSe were 
vehemently Roman Catholic, anti-Serb, and anti-Semitic; their 
avowed policy was to obliterate the Serbs from their territory by 
conversion, deportation, or execution. The regime closed all Ser- 
bian Orthodox primary schools, outlawed the Cyrillic alphabet, 
and ordered Serbs to wear colored arm bands. 

After 1945 Yugoslavia's communist regime worked to snuff out 
manifestations of Croatian nationalism wherever they appeared, 
labeling advocates of Croatian national interests as neo-UstaSe. Na- 
tional aspirations reached a brief peak in 1971 in what was called 
the Croatian Spring, but their threat to the federation caused Tito 
to crack down severely in 1972. In 1990 the sweeping victory of 
Franjo Tudjman's anticommunist Croatian Democratic Union in 
the republican parliamentary elections brought a new rush of Croa- 
tian nationalism. Croats campaigned to distinguish Croatian as a 
separate language, and new Slavic-root words were introduced to 
replace words borrowed from foreign languages. Old Croatian na- 
tional symbols reappeared, and in October 1989, a statue of revolu- 
tionary patriot Josip Jela&c' was restored to Zagreb's central square, 
forty-two years after its removal by federal authorities. 


The Slovenes were among the most westernized but least numer- 
ous of the Slavs. About 2 million strong, they lived almost exclu- 
sively in the mountainous Republic of Slovenia and in enclaves 
in Austria and Italy bordering Slovenia. The Slovenes never pos- 
sessed an independent state but lived within German-dominated 


A canal in Ljubljana 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

empires from Charlemagne's day to the end of World War I. From 
the thirteenth to the twentieth century, they were ruled by the Aus- 
trian Habsburgs. Centuries of exposure to a strong Germanic, Ro- 
man Catholic culture fostered qualities that distinguish the Slovenes 
from the Croats, who lived under the Hungarians, and the Serbs, 
who lived under the Turks, during the same period. The tenacity 
of the Slovenian drive for ethnic and cultural survival was evident 
under German cultural hegemony and surfaced again when the 
Slovenes spearheaded the drive for democratic reforms in com- 
munist Yugoslavia in the late 1980s. 

Slovenian cultural self-awareness dates from the Protestant Refor- 
mation and the Catholic Counterreformation. Propagandists for 
both sides made use of the Slovenian language, which at the time 
was exclusively a peasant idiom. This bolstering of the Slovenes' 
linguistic identity laid the foundation for the later growth of a Slove- 
nian sense of national identity, which began in earnest after Napo- 
leon's armies occupied Slovene-populated regions in the early 
nineteenth century and promoted the idea of a Slovenian nation. One 
of the few monuments to Napoleon outside France remains in Lju- 
bljana, as evidence of Napoleonic influence on the Slovenes. Intel- 
lectuals trained by the Catholic clergy led the Slovenian national 
movement through the nineteenth century. Led by the Romantic 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

poet France PreSeren, they established Slovenian as a literary lan- 
guage and produced a rich national literature. Slovenian leaders 
sought political and cultural autonomy under the Habsburgs rather 
than territorial independence. Although they sympathized with their 
coreligionist Croats, the Slovenes had no interest in uniting with 
the Orthodox Serbs until World War I. 

The Slovenes were by far the most economically advanced of 
the South Slavs at the close of the nineteenth century, and Slove- 
nia maintained that position in the interwar years. Widespread 
primogeniture (land inheritance by the oldest son) in Slovenia limit- 
ed the land fragmentation that plagued the Balkans. Credit and 
marketing cooperatives saved rural Slovenian families from the 
chronic indebtedness that afflicted other regions in the 1920s and 
1930s. The Slovenes' readiness to negotiate and compromise also 
served them well in the interwar era. Their most important con- 
tribution to interwar Yugoslavia's parade of coalition governments 
was Monsignor Antun KoroSec, leader of the conservative Populist 
Party. KoroSec, an effective spokesman for Slovene interests, headed 
several Yugoslav ministries in the late 1920s and early 1930s. The 
Slovenes' linguistic distinctiveness and distance from Belgrade kept 
their republic free of the Serbian bureaucrats who gained strong 
influence over other republics during the interwar years. 

Slovenia's level of prosperity remained higher than that of the 
other Yugoslav republics throughout the socialist era. Because its 
per capita income was highest, the republic contributed a higher 
per capita share to Yugoslavia's federal funds than any other repub- 
lic. The Slovenes complained that the less developed republics ex- 
ploited them and that as a result their standard of living slipped 
precipitously relative to that in the neighboring regions of Austria 
and Italy. Nevertheless, among the Yugoslav republics, Slovenia 
had the highest proportion of its population employed in indus- 
try, the lowest rate of unemployment, and the highest value of ex- 
ports per capita. Slovenia also boasted one of Europe's highest 
literacy rates in the 1980s. Throughout the turbulent late 1980s, 
the Slovenes maintained a strong sense of cultural continuity and 
a devout belief in Roman Catholicism. 

Muslim Slavs 

Beginning in the late 1960s, the Yugoslav government recog- 
nized the Muslim Slavs of Bosnia and Hercegovina as a particular 
nation and not merely as a religious group. Belgrade granted this 
recognition in an effort to resolve the centuries-old struggle in which 
Serbs and Croats claimed ethnic ties with the Muslim Slavs to 
gain a political majority in the disputed republic of Bosnia and 


The Society and Its Environment 

Hercegovina. Muslim Slavs lived in every Yugoslav republic and 
province, but by far the largest concentration was in Bosnia and 
Hercegovina (39.5 percent of the population). In the 1980s, Mon- 
tenegro was 13.4 percent Muslim Slavs, Serbia proper 2.7 percent, 
and Kosovo 3.7 percent. 

Controversy surrounds the geographic and ethnic origins of the 
Muslim Slavs. The best-known theory holds that during the Mid- 
dle Ages Slavs in Bosnia and Hercegovina embraced a heretical 
form of Christianity known as Bogomilism, then converted in large 
numbers to Islam when the Ottoman Turks conquered them. A 
second theory says that the Muslim Slavs were Serbs who embraced 
Islam and settled in Bosnia. A third is that the Muslims were Turk- 
ish setders from Anatolia who adopted the Serbo-Croatian language. 
In any case, Islamization brought tangible economic and social 
benefits to those who converted while the Turks ruled their terri- 
tory; by 1918 Muslim Slavs accounted for 91 percent of Bosnia's 
landowners and a large portion of its merchants. Many emigrated 
to Turkey, however, after the end of Ottoman rule, and the Yu- 
goslav land reforms of 1918 impoverished previously prosperous 
Muslim Slav landowners. 

Islamic culture dominated Bosnia for centuries, and the region 
now boasts a wealth of mosques, medreseler (Islamic schools), ttkkel- 
er (dervish monasteries), Turkish inns and baths, graceful stone 
bridges, covered bazaars, cemeteries, and ornate Turkish-style 
homes. Modern Western culture penetrated Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina only after Austria occupied the region in 1878, but most Mus- 
lims saw its influence as alien and a portent of a Roman Catholic 
resurgence. Gradually, Latin and Cyrillic scripts replaced the Arabic 
that was used for centuries to write Turkish, Arabic, and Persian 
literature. After 1918 secular education began supplanting Islamic 
schools, and education became available to women. Many Muslim 
Slav landowners became urban tradesmen and craftsmen after losing 
their properties in the interwar land reform. Long after World War 
II, the Muslim Slavs engaged predominandy in traditional crafts 
and modern services such as automobile and electronics repair. 

In need of inexpensive oil supplies in the 1970s, the Tito govern- 
ment encouraged relations between Yugoslavia's Muslim Slavs and 
their coreligionists in the oil-rich Arab countries, especially Libya. 
But by raising the status and visibility of its Muslim Slavs, Yugosla- 
via created another potential nationalist issue within its borders. 
In 1983 a dozen persons were convicted of fomenting religious and 
national hatred and planning to turn Bosnia into a religiously pure 
Islamic state. The likelihood of major upheaval sponsored by Mus- 
lim fundamentalists abroad was considered small, however, because 




Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

most of Yugoslavia's Muslim population belonged to the Sunni 
branch of Islam not in sympathy with the main fundamentalist 
groups of the Middle East (see Islam, this ch.). 


Beginning in the seventh century A.D. , the area of the modern 
Republic of Macedonia was overwhelmingly populated by Slavs; 
and in the ninth century, Macedonia produced the first flourish 
of Slavic literary activity. Unresolved, however, is the specific na- 
tionality to which Macedonia's Slavs now belong. The Bulgars, 
the Serbs, and the Greeks claim them. Bulgaria recognized the Mac- 
edonian minority in the Pirin region that it retained after World 
War II. In the late 1980s, however, neither Bulgaria nor Greece 
recognized a Macedonian nationality: Bulgaria insisted that 
Macedonia's Slavs were Bulgars; Greece maintained that the ad- 
jective "Macedonian" was only a territorial designation, and that 
the inhabitants of Aegean Macedonia were not Slavs at all but ethnic 
Greeks who happened to speak a Slavic language. By contrast, be- 
ginning in the 1 960s the Yugoslav government gave the Macedo- 
nians the nominal status of a separate nation, to forestall Greek 
and Bulgarian claims. In 1981 Yugoslav statistics «howed about 
1.3 million ethnic Macedonians in Yugoslavia, 250,000 in Pirin 
Macedonia (southwestern Bulgaria), and over 300,000 in Aegean 
Macedonia (northern Greece). Ac. ording to the 1981 census, 
Macedonians made up 6 percent of Yugoslavia's total population, 
67 percent of Macedonia's, and 0.5 percent of Serbia proper's. 

Macedonia was the first of the Yugoslav lands to fall under the 
Ottoman Turks and the last to be freed from Ottoman rule. The 
dark centuries of Ottoman domination left the region's Slavs back- 
ward, illiterate, and unsure of their ethnic identity. In the nineteenth 
century, Bulgarian, Serbian, and Greek clergy established church 
schools in the region and worked to spread their respective national 
ideologies through education. Families often compromised by send- 
ing one child to each type of school, and whole villages frequently 
passed through several phases of religious and national reorienta- 
tion. After the end of Ottoman rule, control of Macedonia became 
the most inflammatory issue of Balkan politics. After a period of 
guerrilla warfare, terrorism, and savage reprisals ending with Bul- 
garia's defeat in the Second Balkan War in 1913, an anti-Bulgarian 
campaign began in the areas of Macedonia left under Serbian and 
Greek control. Bulgarian schools and churches were closed, and 
thousands of Macedonians fled to Bulgaria, which then was viewed 
as a place of refuge. The process was repeated after Bulgaria's World 
War I occupation of Macedonia ended. In the interwar period, 


The Society and Its Environment 

Macedonian terrorist groups, with intermittent Bulgarian support, 
continued armed resistance against the Yugoslav government. The 
Yugoslavs refused to recognize a Macedonian nation, but many 
Macedonians accepted Yugoslav control in the 1930s and 1940s. 
Bulgarian occupation in 1941, first greeted as liberation, soon 
proved as offensive as the Yugoslav assimilation program it replaced; 
the sense of confused allegiance among Macedonians thus continued 
into the postwar period. 

After World War II, the Yugoslav government recognized Mace- 
donian nationhood and established a separate republic, energetically 
nurturing Macedonian national consciousness and the Macedonian 
language. The first standardized Macedonian grammar was pub- 
lished in 1948. Federal support for Macedonian cultural institu- 
tions, including a university in Skopje, furthered the program of 
national recognition. In 1967 Belgrade underscored the Macedo- 
nians' ethnic individuality by supporting the independence of the 
Macedonian Orthodox Church, which for years afterward enjoyed 
a more favored position than any of Yugoslavia's other churches. 


Yugoslavia's ethnic Albanians lived mainly in Kosovo (about 
77.4 percent), Serbia proper (1.3 percent), Macedonia (officially 
about 19.8 percent but probably much higher), and Montenegro 
(about 6.3 percent). In recent decades, a search for work drew ethnic 
Albanians to the country's larger cities as well as to Western Eu- 
rope and North America. Despite the fact that the 1.7 million eth- 
nic Albanians counted in the 1981 census exceeded the populations 
of Macedonians and Montenegrins in Yugoslavia, Albanians were 
not recognized as a nation under the 1974 Constitution because, 
according to the Yugoslav government, their traditional homeland 
was outside Yugoslavia. In general, Albanian culture was practiced 
more openly in Yugoslavia than in Albania, where the remains of 
Stalinist suppression limited many aspects of self-expression. Thus, 
ironically, Yugoslavia was the only place where some Albanian tra- 
ditions were preserved. 

Albanians were once a mostly Roman Catholic people. After the 
Ottoman Turks conquered them in the fifteenth century, many 
Albanian families gained economic and social advantages by con- 
verting to Islam. By 1990 only about 10 percent of Kosovo's eth- 
nic Albanians were Catholic. 

In the late eighteenth century, Albanians held important posts 
in the Ottoman army, courts, and administration. Feudal econom- 
ic relations survived among the ethnic Albanians of Kosovo and 
Macedonia until Serbia took those regions from the Ottoman Empire 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

in 1913. After World War I, the Serbian government made repeated 
attempts to colonize Kosovo with the families of its officer corps. 
Under Serbia, Albanians enjoyed no voice in local administration, 
no schools, and no publications in their own language in the inter- 
war period. Serbs and Montenegrins dominated the administra- 
tion of Kosovo from 1946 to 1966, despite the numerical superiority 
of the Kosovan Albanians, their postwar recognition as a distinct 
nationality, and the introduction of Albanian-language schools and 

In 1966 Aleksandar Rankovic, the Serbian head of the Yugo- 
slav secret police, fell from power, and Kosovan Albanians assumed 
a dominant position in the province. After 1968 Albanians were 
permitted to display the national flag of Albania in Kosovo and 
adopt the official Albanian literary language, which is based on 
the dialect of Albania rather than that spoken in Kosovo. Cultural 
exchanges introduced teachers from Albania and textbooks print- 
ed in Albania. Yugoslavia's 1974 Constitution gave Kosovo vir- 
tually the same rights as the country's constituent republics; 
nowhere in Europe had such far-ranging concessions to national 
rights been granted in a region considered so potentially separatist. 
After that time, however, the clash of extreme Serbian and Kosovan 
nationalist ideologies caused a Serbian nationalist backlash that re- 
voked many of those concessions (see Kosovo, ch. 4). 

For centuries, ethnic Albanian villagers in Kosovo lived in ex- 
tended families of 70 to 100 members ruled by a patriarch. Although 
the traditional extended family structure eroded steadily after World 
War II, in 1990 extended families of 20 to 40 members still lived 
within walled compounds. Blood vengeance, arranged marriages, 
and polygamy were not uncommon. Many Albanian women lived 
secluded in the home, subordinate to male authority, and with lit- 
tle or no access to education. 

In 1990 Yugoslavia's ethnic Albanians had the highest birth rate 
in Europe, and more than half of Kosovo's Albanians were under 
twenty years old in the late 1970s. The birth rate strained the 
region's already desperate economy and depressed the Albanians' 
standard of living in every area. The ethnic Albanians also had 
Yugoslavia's lowest literacy rate: 68.5 percent of individuals over 
age ten were able to read in 1979. In 1981 only 178,000 of 1.5 
million Albanians in Kosovo were employed; one in four of those 
employed held nominal bureaucratic positions. Meanwhile, the stu- 
dent population of 470,000 was a constant source of political un- 
rest and potentially higher unemployment upon graduation. 


The Society and Its Environment 


Yugoslavia had one of the largest Gypsy populations in the world. 
The 1981 census officially recorded 168,099 Gypsies in the coun- 
try, but unofficial counts estimated the Gypsy population as five 
to six times larger. The Gypsies suffered many serious social 
problems, and intolerance of Gypsies by other ethnic groups was 
still prevalent in the northern parts of Yugoslavia in the 1980s. A 
high percentage of Gypsies were illiterate or had only a few years 
of primary education. Despite government attempts to lure them 
into schools and paying jobs, many Gypsies continued to live a 
nomadic existence as traders, beggars, and fortune-tellers. Dur- 
ing the 1980s, large conventions periodically demanded full rec- 
ognition of Yugoslav Gypsies as a separate nation; the federal 
government reached no decision on their proposals, although some 
concessions were made. Meanwhile, the Gypsies undeniably ad- 
ded a unique element to Yugoslav culture: Gypsy musicians played 
at most weddings, and Gypsy street bands played music for hand- 
outs on holiday weekends. 

Social Groups 

Although Yugoslavia's ethnic landscape remained relatively stable 
during the twentieth century, its socioeconomic structure under- 
went especially profound changes after World War II. On the eve 
of the war, Yugoslavia was a predominandy agricultural land with 
slowly developing basic industries. Society's broad base was the 
peasantry, which made up over 80 percent of the population. The 
country had a minuscule working class; government bureaucrats 
and a few entrepreneurs, professionals, merchants, and artisans 
made up the elite. After World War II, Yugoslavia's communist 
rulers ordered rapid industrialization, and peasants left their farms 
in droves to fill industrial and office jobs in the cities. The com- 
munists brushed aside the prewar elite, nationalized about 80 per- 
cent of their property, and established a new class of government 
bureaucrats. For several decades, party membership and educa- 
tion were the keys to upward mobility in Yugoslav society. But 
the economic downturn of the 1970s and 1980s brought nagging 
unemployment and stifling bureaucracy that seriously impeded en- 
try into the working and managing classes, even for educated and 
skilled individuals. Yugoslavia's immense postwar social transfor- 
mation brought profound changes to the family structure, the lives 
of women, young people, and the elderly. 

The Peasantry 

Under the post- World War II communist regime, Yugoslavia 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

experienced one of the quickest transformations from an agricul- 
tural to an industrial society that history has ever witnessed. The 
agricultural population shrank from 86.1 percent of the total popu- 
lation in 1921 to 67.1 percent in 1948 and to 16.7 percent in 1984. 
By comparison, it took the United States ninety years to drop from 
a 72 percent farm population in 1840 to 32 percent in 1930. Aside 
from government economic policies that intentionally deprived 
agriculture of resources after World War II, social factors also 
pushed peasants off the land (see Application of Stalinist Econom- 
ics, ch. 3). The lack of pension benefits for peasants, the absence 
of social benefits for their children, limited availability of state hous- 
ing in rural areas, and isolation from the lively cultural and social 
life of the urban centers accelerated the process. 

Despite their dramatic shift from agricultural to nonagricultur- 
al activities, Yugoslavs remained linked to the soil in many ways. 
The country's agricultural population still numbered 4.3 million 
in 1981; of that number, 2.2 to 2.9 million tilled small private plots, 
including about 1.5 million people who held regular jobs elsewhere. 
Even before the economic turmoil of the late 1980s, many city 
dwellers, especially retirees with inadequate pensions, supplemented 
their income and their diet by selling or consuming produce they 
grew or livestock they raised on small plots in nearby villages. 

The average age of Yugoslavia's peasant population rose rapid- 
ly after World War II. Moreover, given the outward migration 
of young men, by the 1970s women accounted for 60 percent of 
the agricultural work force. In 35 percent of farm households, no 
children remained to operate the farm when the older generation 
retired. In 1990 the federal government proposed a law to provide 
pensions for individual peasant farmers and to give young people 
greater incentive not to abandon the land for city jobs. 

The Soviet- style agricultural collectivization program began in 
Yugoslavia in 1949 and ended less than four years later. Aban- 
donment of collectivization left the country's prewar patchwork of 
small private landholdings virtually intact. Peasants accounted for 
95 percent of the agricultural work force and owned about 82 per- 
cent of Yugoslavia's arable land in 1989. The average peasant farm 
had eight or nine parcels of land totaling about 3.4 hectares. Con- 
stitutional amendments adopted in 1988 raised the ceiling on land- 
ownership from ten to thirty hectares in flatland areas and sixty 
hectares in hilly and mountainous regions. 

Conditions on the average Yugoslav peasant farm changed dra- 
matically after 1945; significant differences remained, however, 
between peasant life in the more developed northwestern parts of 
the country and that in the less developed southeastern regions. 



Lake Bled, Slovenia 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

In 1990 electricity was available virtually everywhere, and many 
peasant households had artificial lighting, refrigeration, freezers, 
radios, and televisions. Few peasants, however, had telephones. 
The number of tractors had risen, but fragmented landownership 
made large-scale mechanized farming impossible in most areas. 
Mechanization of farm activities in more developed regions reduced 
the necessity for human toil, but the overall efficiency of Yugoslav 
farms lagged far behind that of farms in the West. On the aver- 
age, one Yugoslav farmer produced enough agricultural goods for 
five people, whereas in Western industrial countries average produc- 
tion fed sixty-five people. 

In part the exodus from agricultural life in Yugoslavia was driven 
by a desire to cast off ways of life that peasants themselves often 
considered obsolete. Older villagers, frequendy painfully aware of 
their backwardness, wished to see their children and grandchildren 
find a life for themselves in what they called the wide world. Yu- 
goslavia's peasant villages, however, shed many traditions only very 
slowly. In 1990 older men and women still wore folk costumes in 
some parts of Hercegovina, Macedonia, and Kosovo. Peasant 
dances, handicrafts, and powerful locally distilled beverages re- 
mained part of everyday life. Priests baptized most newborns and 
buried most of the dead, but villagers in many areas still visited 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

traditional folk healers and fortune-tellers, who read the future in 
coffee grounds. While all was amiable on the surface, behind the 
scenes family and neighborhood animosities persisted through the 
generations, and villagers squabbled bitterly over scarce resources 
and inheritances. Cafes were filled with old men during the day 
and younger men at night. Alcoholism commonly afflicted both 
men and women, and alcohol- related road and farm accidents 
claimed an inordinate number of lives. 

Transportation improvements after the war gave many peasants 
the opportunity to work away from the family farm and still retain 
close links with their homes. Uprooted peasants accounted for about 
half the Yugoslav guest workers in Western Europe (see Guest Work- 
ers, this ch.). By 1970 some 1.5 million peasants, about 25 per- 
cent of the economically active rural population, held jobs outside 
agriculture, and about half of Yugoslavia's rural population lived 
in households with at least one member who held an industrial job. 
Money sent home by guest workers abroad created a boom in new 
rural home building, even in some of the least accessible moun- 
tain areas. In eastern Serbia, this prosperity was expressed in the 
building of extravagant cemetery monuments, including graveside 

The Workers 

The Yugoslav industrial working class grew exponentially after 
World War II, when the communist regime launched its drive for 
rapid industrialization. From 1947 to 1952, industrial employment 
grew by 75.2 percent as peasants left their farms for jobs in the 
cities. From 1954 to 1975, industrial jobs grew at an average an- 
nual rate of 4.3 percent, and the industrial working class grew from 
1.1 million in 1947 to 6.3 million in 1985. In the mid-1980s, the 
social sector (see Glossary) of the economy employed about 98 per- 
cent of the country's workers. 

Several years after Yugoslavia's 1948 economic break with the 
Soviet Union, the government instituted a comprehensive economic 
reform that transformed state ownership of enterprises into social 
ownership and theoretically turned over control of the enterprises 
to the workers who labored in them (see Socialist Self-Management, 
ch. 3). Socialist self- management remained a sacrosanct tenet of 
the Yugoslav political culture for the next thirty-five years, until 
economic turmoil forced structural reform in 1989. 

Under self-management, workers who were permanent em- 
ployees in enterprises were virtually guaranteed a job for life. If 
a worker terminated employment with an enterprise, however, he 


The Society and Its Environment 

or she almost always lost the possibility of finding another posi- 
tion within the social sector. Under the Law on Associated Labor 
of 1976, each worker belonged to a basic organization of associat- 
ed labor (BOAL) assigned according to his or her precise role in 
the production process. The BOALs elected workers' councils, 
which in turn appointed executive bodies to set wages and produc- 
tion goals and recommend investment policy. The executive body 
appointed a director or board responsible for day-to-day operation 
of the enterprise. 

Despite the profoundly egalitarian ideology on which it was based, 
practical operation of self-management reflected the stratification 
of the industrial work force. Skilled and educated workers occupied 
a disproportionately large number of seats on workers' councils. 
From the mid-1950s to the mid-1970s, skilled workers (roughly a 
third of enterprise employees) regularly won half the workers' coun- 
cil slots; the percentage of semiskilled or unskilled workers declined 
during the same period. Workers' council presidents also came dis- 
proportionately from the ranks of skilled workers or white-collar 
employees. Workers with advanced educational degrees account- 
ed for nearly two-thirds of all workers' council presidents. The com- 
position of executive bodies reflected the same trend. 

The enterprise director and the director's staff wielded consider- 
able influence. Access to and control of information about busi- 
ness conditions and overall operation of the enterprise gave the 
director an advantage in steering workers' council decision mak- 
ing. Workers exercised more influence on policies directly affect- 
ing working conditions and wages; over the years, they left 
investment and production decisions and daily operation of the en- 
terprise to the director. 

Self-managed enterprises responded to market conditions differ- 
ently than firms in capitalist countries, and the relationship of the 
interests of management and skilled and unskilled workers also 
differed. Policies geared toward enhancing the enterprise's efficiency 
and competitiveness conflicted with socially guaranteed higher 
wages and job security for workers. Economic downturns gener- 
ally caused reductions in investment rather than layoffs or reduced 
wages. An enterprise could reduce its labor force only with the 
workers' consent. This normally meant long, tedious legal proce- 
dures and finding alternative employment or job training to pre- 
vent workers from becoming unemployed. 

The economic restructuring that followed the turmoil of the 1980s 
radically changed the fortunes of the working class. Strikes reached 
epidemic proportions by the end of the decade. Large numbers 
of workers returned their membership cards in the League of 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Communists of Yugoslavia (LCY — see Glossary), and by 1985 
party membership included only one of eleven semiskilled workers 
and one of five skilled workers (see League of Communists of Yu- 
goslavia, ch. 4). 

Lacking organizational autonomy, the official trade unions failed 
to protect the workers' living standards, and workers generally 
regarded the unions as irrelevant (see Trade Unions, ch. 4). In 
the late 1980s, unofficial unions began forming in Slovenia and 
the other republics after the government lifted restrictions on form- 
ing independent organizations. 

Laws restricting private business ownership became increasingly 
ineffectual in the late 1980s. Most often ignored were tax statutes 
and restrictions on the number of workers employed in private en- 
terprise. Workers outside the social sector frequently worked sixty 
or more hours per week and earned much better wages than those 
paid for the same work in the social sector. Private employers often 
employed skilled workers illegally, especially after the normal closing 
hour of socially owned enterprises (3:00 P.M.), and many work- 
ers employed in the social sector moonlighted in their free time. 

In the 1980s, unemployment became a serious threat to the Yu- 
goslav working class. Between 1965 and 1985, the number of offi- 
cially unemployed persons rose from 237,000 to 1,039,000. 
Unemployment rates varied widely among regions. Slovenia con- 
sistently had the lowest, Kosovo by far the highest unemployment. 
The comprehensive economic reform of December 1989 led to elimi- 
nation of redundant workers in Yugoslav firms and brought another 
steep increase in national unemployment (see Living Standards, 
ch. 3). In the initial aftermath of the reform, government plan- 
ners relied on expansion in the private sector to re-employ work- 
ers who lost their jobs. In the first year, however, unemployment 
continued to rise. 

The Political Elite and Intellectuals 

During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a tiny in- 
telligentsia dominated the process of social and political change that 
transformed Yugoslav society. South Slavic writers, journalists, and 
scholars articulated popular aspirations and acted as catalysts for 
the rising nationalism of the peoples enclosed by the Austro- 
Hungarian and Ottoman empires. In interwar Yugoslavia, despite 
the prevalence of revolving-door cabinets, a group of about forty 
to fifty educated and politically experienced figures formed a semi- 
permanent ruling circle. The bureaucratic and professional class 
was a broader middle stratum of about 200,000 white-collar work- 
ers concentrated in urban centers. Government service, which 


Harbor at Dubrovnik 
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg 

required secondary and university schooling, was virtually the only 
employment opportunity available for ambitious individuals. 

Yugoslavia's interwar ruling elite represented the tip of a very 
broad-based social pyramid. Society was overwhelmingly rural and 
uneducated; only about half of the population could read, and less 
than 10 percent lived in cities. The elite was drawn from the sons 
of the middle and upper strata: large landowners and bureaucrats 
and a handful of industrialists, financiers, and military officers. 
No rising industrial bourgeoisie threatened their hold on the state 
apparatus. The elite was also overwhelmingly Serbian; most Croa- 
tian intellectuals and the minuscule number of educated Macedo- 
nians and Albanians were excluded. Their exclusion from the only 
path to upward mobility — the government bureaucracy — exacerbated 
the bitter nationalism and separatism of the era (see Political Life 
in the 1920s, ch. 1). 

The turmoil of World War II and political takeover by the CPY 
brought radical changes to Yugoslavia's ruling circle. The com- 
munists ousted the prewar elite and replaced it with a new ruling 
class chosen by party loyalty. During the war, the party was com- 
posed largely of peasants and workers. Party leadership was sig- 
nificantly more rural than the prewar elite; in 1945 only 5 percent 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

of CPY leaders came from Belgrade, the former bastion of power. 
In 1952 Yugoslavia's communist political leadership class num- 
bered about 51,000; it grew to 93,000 in the 1960s and added 
another 100,000 members in the mid-1970s after constitutional 
redefinition of the self-management system. 

In the immediate postwar period, service in Tito's anti-Nazi Par- 
tisan forces or pre- 1941 membership in the CPY were the main 
prerequisites for a successful elite career. Over 75 percent of 
pre- 1941 party members pursued professional political or military 
careers following World War II. They also tended to linger in their 
positions. Active and retired persons with pre- 1941 party mem- 
bership accounted for less than 0.5 percent of total party member- 
ship in the late 1960s, but they held over 15 percent of the leading 
positions in the party and society at large. By the 1980s, the LCY 
had lost its working-class base and had become a party of state em- 
ployees. Party members accounted for 94. 1 percent of the Croatian 
parliament in 1982. Communists accounted for over 95 percent 
of all government administrators until the LCY abandoned its mo- 
nopoly of power in 1990. Until that date, nomination of delegates 
to fill positions at all levels of the government — which led to auto- 
matic elra'.m — was based on support from the party elite. The 
party monopoly led to formation of uncontrollable and nonelected 
oligarchies in each of Yugoslavia's eight federal units (see Local 
Government and the Communes, ch. 4). 

With few exceptions, the men who took power in Yugoslavia 
after World War II were the sons of peasants and workers. This 
pattern persisted through the 1960s, when 68.4 percent of Yugo- 
slavia's political leaders had fathers who had been peasants or 
workers and more than 75 percent had grandfathers from those 
backgrounds. The same pattern applied to the country's profes- 
sional classes as a whole. In 1960 nearly one-third of all white-collar 
workers had been peasants themselves in 1946, and nearly three- 
fourths came from peasant or worker families. 

As the Partisan generation aged, education became more im- 
portant in professional advancement. By the early 1970s, about 
90 percent of the country's professionals had gained their positions 
at least nominally on the basis of educational credentials. Older 
employees upgraded their job qualifications through continuing edu- 
cation programs. Expanding opportunities in higher education, 
liberal admissions standards, and substantial public financing for 
education all contributed to upward mobility in the 1960s and 1970s. 
As many more Yugoslavs received formal educational training 
and reached privileged positions, however, mobility declined. The 
probability that children of workers or peasants would become 


The Society and Its Environment 

university students fell compared with the chances of the children 
of professionals. 

The rise of a substantial technical intelligentsia was a major so- 
cial development in postwar Yugoslavia. The technical intelligentsia, 
which provided scientific and management support for industri- 
alization, came to enjoy considerable popular prestige. Although 
they could find higher-paying jobs in the West, relatively few mem- 
bers of this class joined the massive worker emigration to Western 
Europe that began in the late 1960s. Before Tito's death in 1980, 
the technical elite — who supported enterprise autonomy — had a 
hostile relationship with party and government officials who favored 
democratic centralism. In the mid-1960s, party hard-liners attacked 
the technocrats for their petit bourgeois mentality and labeled them 
class enemies who subverted self-management. 

The communist regime's relationship with artists and scholars 
was likewise a troubled one. Artists and scholars were constantly 
at odds with the government's efforts to control nationalism and 
free expression. Numerous Croatian intellectuals lost their jobs or 
were imprisoned after the Croatian Spring of 1971, and trials of 
dissident writers and scholars took place regularly for the next two 
decades throughout the country (see Djilas, Praxis, and Intellec- 
tual Repression, ch. 4). Intellectuals came to the fore again in the 
late 1980s, when national differences divided the LCY. Albanians 
were the most manifestly disaffected intellectuals in the 1 980s, as 
they fought Serbian restrictions on autonomy for Kosovo. The 
Kosovo issue also drew Serbian intellectuals into the political are- 
na. A memorandum written by leading members of the Serbian 
Academy of Sciences and leaked to a Belgrade newspaper in 1986 
described the Serbian nation as being in greater jeopardy than at 
any time since World War II. Likewise, Slovenian intellectuals led 
the push for democratic reforms that swept over the country from 
Slovenia southward in the late 1980s (see Intellectual Opposition 
Groups, ch. 4). 

The Family 

Despite the massive changes of the socialist era, society in Yu- 
goslavia remained oriented around family and kin. Rights and 
duties were defined by family relationships much more rigorously 
than in contemporary Western societies. For example, the 1962 
Basic Law on Relations Between Parents and Children defined the 
material support legally due one's parents, children, siblings, grand- 
parents, and other relatives. The law obliged citizens to support 
needy or incapacitated relatives and specified the order in which 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

aid and assistance should come from both lineal and collateral 

The zadruga (pi., zadruge), a kin-based corporate group holding 
property in common, was the traditional basis of rural social or- 
ganization throughout the Balkans. From the feudal era onward, 
customary and formal law enshrined the rights and obligations of 
zadruga members. Throughout rural Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, 
Hercegovina, Macedonia, Kosovo, and much of Bosnia, the zadruga 
persisted as a formally constituted kin group until well after World 
War II. Its most common form was a group of patrilineally relat- 
ed males, along with their spouses and children. Members of a zadru- 
ga generally owned and farmed land in common. 

The zadruga survived because membership in a corporate group 
conferred clear advantages on the individual peasant family. For 
the Balkan peasantry, the zadruga made it possible to endure wars, 
foreign rule, exploitation of new lands, conversion from pastoral- 
ism to agriculture, and seasonal off-farm employment. Precise con- 
figuration of the kin group varied during the past five centuries 
in response to regional changes in political, economic, and geo- 
graphic conditions. The zadruga maintained cultural integrity during 
centuries of foreign domination, and it protected the peasant against 
the predations of state and bandit. Religious practices centered on 
the individual zadruga and not on the parish church. Even among 
Muslim Slavs, each zadruga had a patron saint; the saint's day 
celebration, the slava, remained the high point of the calendar for 
many families late in the twentieth century. 

Large multifamily households enjoyed significant advantages, 
especially in rural areas, well into the twentieth century. A sub- 
stantial adult labor force permitted family members to specialize 
and to engage in a variety of subsidiary operations to supplement 
agricultural income. The burden of agricultural labor could be 
spread at peak seasons, men were freed to engage in politics, and 
women had time for handicrafts. An extended family's wealth 
almost always exceeded that of two to three nuclear households of 
comparable size. The zadruga also provided a refuge for the or- 
phaned, the widowed, the infirm, and the elderly. 

The composition of the extended family changed with the in- 
creasing life expectancy realized in the twentieth century. The num- 
ber of generations in a given household rose from two to three or 
even four, while the number of collateral relatives — brothers, cousins, 
and second cousins — decreased. Patriarchal authority, often overbear- 
ing within the traditional zadruga, grew more so as the life expectan- 
cy of the parents increased. The wars of the twentieth century and 


Albanian man and 
boy in oda, traditional 
family room, Kosovo 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

migration away from rural areas after World War II caused a 
decline in joint ownership of property by extended families. 

Under communist rule, the extended family became a coopera- 
tive rather than a formally corporate kin group; but family loyalty 
and a general feeling of responsibility toward kin persisted. In- 
dividuals relied on relatives for mutual aid and support in a wide 
variety of social and economic contexts. Family solidarity eased 
the shock of urbanization and industrialization throughout the 1960s 
and 1970s; relatives provided urban housing for students from the 
countryside and employment advice and assistance for the recent 
rural migrant. Migrants to the city maintained ties with their kin 
in the country, periodically helping with agricultural or construc- 
tion tasks. Among the country's technical and managerial elite, 
kinship strengthened the relationship between commune and en- 
terprise and reinforced local and familial loyalties. 

Nominal kinship in the form of godparenthood, or kumstvo, cut 
across the familial focus of South Slavic social relations. Kumstvo 
and marriage were the two institutions by which the zadruga formed 
ties with other kin groups. Traditionally, the godparent-godchild 
relationship formed a permanent link, inherited patrilineally, be- 
tween two zadruge. Although kumstvo observance was less elaborate 
among Muslim Slavs, they did observe rituals such as the cutting 
of a child's umbilical cord and the first hair cutting. The relationship 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

implied few specific obligations between the zadruge besides a general 
expectation of friendship and assistance. 

With urbanization, the number of large and extended families 
declined. From the 1948 census to the 1981 census, average fami- 
ly size dropped from 4.37 to 3.67 members. The decline was steepest 
in the developed regions. In Kosovo, approximately three-quarters 
of all households had five or more members in the early 1970s, 
and over a quarter had ten or more members. As late as 1953, 
about one-third of all Yugoslav households were classified as ex- 
tended families. The percentage of extended families dropped 
precipitously by the early 1970s. Smaller domestic groups appeared 
to be more advantageous in an urban setting; in both developed 
and less-developed regions, only about one-fourth of all urban 
households were extended families by 1980. 

The Role of Women 

Traditionally, women played subservient roles in Yugoslavia's 
patriarchal families, especially in the country's backward moun- 
tainous regions. In the interwar period, specific legislation protected 
women's subservient status within the family. Rapid industrializa- 
tion and urbanization in the communist era broke down traditional 
family patterns in varying degrees among the landless inhabitants 
of rural and mountainous areas. This trend was most pronounced 
in the more developed northern and western urban areas. The num- 
ber of women employed outside the home rose from about 400,000 
in 1948 to 2.4 million in 1985. As women began working away 
from home, they developed a more independent identity. 

After World War II, women in Yugoslavia won complete civil 
and political rights and gained access to education, employment, 
social welfare programs, health care, and political office. Although 
women became better educated and increasingly employed, 
however, they did not generally win full equality in the job mar- 
ket or advancement to high social and political positions. In the 
1980s, the percentage of women in low-level political and manage- 
ment positions was quite representative, but their representation 
declined toward the top of the administrative pyramid. 

Women accounted for 38 percent of Yugoslavia's nonagricul- 
tural labor force in 1987, up from 26 percent thirty years earlier. 
The participation of women in the Yugoslav work force varied dra- 
matically according to region. In Slovenia women made up 43.9 
percent of fhe work force; in Kosovo, 20 percent. In 1989 Yugo- 
slav women worked primarily in three fields: cultural and social 
welfare (56.3 percent of the persons employed in the field), public 
services and public administration (42 percent), and trade and 



The Society and Its Environment 

catering (41.8 percent). Almost all Yugoslavia's elementary school 
teachers were women. 

Although women's groups had formed in Ljubljana, Zagreb, and 
Belgrade and a number of female political columnists had advo- 
cated the feminist cause, as of 1990 the women's movement had 
yet to achieve significant power in Yugoslavia. Feminist commen- 
tators observed that Yugoslavia's rapid industrialization had not 
eradicated traditional patriarchalism but had instead created a new 
form of patriarchal society in which women were treated as sex 
objects exploited in the workplace and at home. Those allegations 
were backed by the wide availability of hard-core pornography 
everywhere in the country and the fact that most working women 
were still expected to do traditional household chores. 

Students and Youth 

Students were a perennial source of concern for Yugoslavia's 
communist regime. They often assumed the viewpoint of pure 
Marxism in criticizing the inequality of the socialist self- 
management system; in general, students far surpassed their elders 
in demanding reform. Student unrest erupted in 1968 at several 
universities, in 1971 at the University of Zagreb, and in 1981 at 
the University of PriStina. In 1968 students in Belgrade, Zagreb, 
Ljubljana, and Sarajevo protested the bourgeois quality of Yugoslav 
socialism and the failure of socialist self-management to create an 
egalitarian society. The later unrest in Zagreb and PriStina was 
largely an expression of the respective nationalistic goals of the 
Croats and the Kosovans. 

In the late 1980s, youth publications, especially in Slovenia, 
provided an important public platform for frank debate of sensi- 
tive issues and taboo topics, such as nuclear energy, government 
corruption, and resistance to military service (see The Media, ch. 
4). With the collapse of communism throughout Eastern Europe 
in the late 1980s, student activists on Yugoslav campuses focused 
on issues of ecology, nationalism, women's rights, and peace. Poll- 
ing data, however, showed a high degree of apathy among Yugo- 
slavia's young people. In a youth opinion poll conducted in the 
port city of Split, 83 percent of the respondents said that nepotism 
and connections were essential to success; 53 percent answered that 
knowledge and intelligence had no influence whatsoever on social 
status, advancement, or success in life. 


Between 1965 and 1988, the number of Yugoslavs receiving old-age 
and disability pensions and survivor benefits rose steeply (see table 6, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Appendix). The annual rate of increase was 4 to 7 percent, de- 
pending on the republic or province. This growth was considera- 
bly higher than the growth in the employment rate, which averaged 
2 percent to 4.5 percent annually in the same period. The number 
of pensioners grew as a result of broader coverage by old-age pen- 
sion plans, an aging population, and the high disability rate of 
laborers. The number of persons receiving survivor benefits also 
increased between 1965 and 1988 as a result of the relatively high 
accident mortality rate. 

In the late 1980s, retirement and disability pensions covered all 
employed individuals and all self-employed persons outside the 
agricultural sector. Pensions also were available to private farm- 
ers under a voluntary payment plan, and private farmers nearing 
old age were offered pensions in exchange for the sale of their land 
to an agricultural cooperative. Retirement age was set at sixty years 
after at least twenty years of service for men and fifty-five years 
after at least fifteen years for women. Retirement became manda- 
tory in the early 1970s. The economic crisis of the 1980s jeopardized 
Yugoslavia's pension system, and in 1990 pensions often went un- 
paid for months. 

Urbanization and Housing 

Despite massive post-World War II migration from rural vil- 
lages to cities, Yugoslavia still ranked as one of Europe's least ur- 
banized countries in 1990. At the war's end, almost 80 percent 
of the Yugoslav population lived in villages. Over the next twenty- 
five years, about 4.6 million people, equivalent to 20 percent of 
the country's 1981 population, migrated to cities. The urban popu- 
lation grew by 80 percent between 1953 and 1971; by the mid-1970s, 
slightly over one-third of all Yugoslavs lived in urban centers. 


Obtaining adequate housing was a major problem in all Yugo- 
slav cities, especially for rural migrants. For years, single male 
migrants resorted to dormitory-style accommodations that many 
enterprises maintained for their workers. Migrants from urban areas 
fared better in finding housing in cities because of their greater 
experience with urban life and generally higher education or profes- 
sional level. The quality of migrant housing usually improved with 
length of residence, and acquisition of satisfactory housing became 
a mark of a migrant's success in a new location. 

Although Yugoslavia had a total of 6.7 million housing units in 
1984, housing remained in short supply in every urban area, and 


The Society and Its Environment 

cost began to increase dramatically in the 1970s. In 1987 the price 
of a housing unit with sixty square meters of floor space equaled 
about twenty average annual incomes. While the urban popula- 
tion grew in the 1970s, housing construction in Yugoslavia's cities 
actually dropped. Urban centers received 10,000 fewer new hous- 
ing units in 1978 than in 1975, a decline that was sharpest in the 
six largest cities. In Slovenia this fall resulted in part from the repub- 
lic's effort to promote the simultaneous growth of several urban 
centers. In Yugoslavia's other republics, however, the drop reflected 
shortages of building materials, rising construction costs, and ad- 
ministrative problems in the self-managed housing system. 

Yugoslavia's housing system offered two methods of obtaining 
long-term accommodations: through private initiative, using bank, 
enterprise, or private loans; or through allocation of socially owned 
apartments. A person's chances of receiving housing loans or a so- 
cially owned apartment generally were proportional to his or her 
social standing. 

About two-thirds of Yugoslavia's housing units were privately 
owned, and about 80 percent of housing construction was done 
by private enterprise. In nearly all cases, private housing construc- 
tion was a long-term, pay-as-you-go ordeal involving contribution 
of significant labor by the homeowner. The outskirts of all Yugo- 
slav cities featured rows of occupied and unoccupied homes at var- 
ious stages of completion. Private housing consisted mostly of village 
houses, private apartments, and homes built on the periphery of 
major cities. 

Socially owned apartments were allocated by the state without 
investment by the occupant; rent and maintenance payments were 
nominal. Although apartments were technically social property, 
occupants had de facto property rights. Enterprises deducted funds 
for social apartments from the general employee payroll; thus, all em- 
ployees paid for socially owned housing, whatever type of housing 
they occupied. Apartment allocation was based on a complex set 
of criteria, including family size, work seniority, age, and position. 
The wait for a socially owned apartment could last decades, and 
bitter disputes arose among candidates for a long-sought apartment. 

Graft was endemic in the Yugoslav housing system. Partly for 
this reason, workers had the least chance of obtaining socially owned 
housing, while professionals and members of the bureaucracy had 
the greatest. Reform plans for the early 1990s called for occupants 
of socially owned apartments to begin buying them outright by 
adding a monthly principal payment to their maintenance fees, but 
in 1990 reforms awaited a government decision on redefinition and 
distribution of social property. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Urban Problems 

Yugoslav cities grew without adequate planning. Regardless of 
region, people with tenure in socially owned apartments lived mosdy 
in the city centers, while privately owned homes were located far- 
ther out. The chronic housing shortage resulted in the develop- 
ment of sizable unplanned settlements on the periphery of large 
cities. These setdements often lacked paved streets, running water, 
or sewer lines. Gypsy shantytowns also surrounded many urban 
areas. City inspectors were reluctant to evict the inhabitants of these 
areas because eviction would cause a public outcry and appear to 
be discrimination against the poor. 

Yugoslavia's speedy urbanization brought many problems as- 
sociated in the West with life in big cities. Drug use, although still 
relatively uncommon, grew steadily in the 1980s. Drug traffickers 
frequented Yugoslavia's main roadways, carrying heroin and other 
drugs to Western Europe from sources in the Middle East. Some 
of these drugs found their way into Yugoslavia's drug underground. 
Urban treatment facilities registered about 2,000 drug addicts, but 
the total number of drug abusers was estimated at 10,000 in 1988. 
The Yugoslav government's antidrug program consisted of a cam- 
paign to interdict drug shipments, treat drug abusers, and prevent 
drug abuse. 

Guest Workers 

Besides urbanization, a second important migration trend in 
Yugoslav society after World War II was the emigration of Yugo- 
slav guest workers and their dependents. The departure of Yugo- 
slavs seeking work began in the 1950s, when individuals began 
slipping across the border illegally. Economic expansion in Western 
Europe in the 1960s created a demand for labor that domestic labor 
supplies could not fill; at the same time, Yugoslav industries could 
not absorb all the workers in the country's labor pool, including 
educated and highly skilled individuals. In the mid-1960s, Yugo- 
slavia lifted emigration restrictions, and the number of emigres 
increased rapidly. By the early 1970s, Yugoslavia had Europe's 
second-highest emigration rate, and 20 percent of the country's 
labor force was employed abroad. In 1973 about 1 . 1 million work- 
ers and dependents were living and working outside Yugoslavia's 
borders; 900,000 of these were living in Western Europe. Re- 
strictions on guest workers in Western Europe curtailed the out- 
flow of Yugoslavs in 1973 and 1974, and the somewhat reduced 
movement has remained steady since. In 1985 about 600,000 
Yugoslavs were working abroad, accompanied by about 400,000 


Street in Kaludjerica, a town of Serbian refugees from Kosovo, near Belgrade 

Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

dependents. In 1987 the rate of permanent return to Yugoslavia 
was about 40,000 workers per year. 

In the early 1970s, a disproportionate number of emigre work- 
ers came from Yugoslavia's economically developed northern and 
western regions, including Croatia, Slovenia, eastern Vojvodina, 
and northeastern Serbia. The 1981 census, however, showed an 
increase in the number of guest workers from Serbia proper, Mon- 
tenegro, and Kosovo. Overall, only 30.9 percent of emigre work- 
ers came from cities and towns. A 40 percent drop in the number 
of reported Croatian guest workers caused speculation that many 
Croats were adopting permanent foreign residency. 

Higher wages in West European countries at first attracted mostly 
city-dwelling, mature male Yugoslav workers with specific job skills. 
By the mid-1970s, the attraction had spread to peasants, unskilled 
workers, and women in rural areas. In the 1970s, guest workers 
were more likely to have completed elementary school and voca-" 
tional training than the Yugoslav population as a whole. The out- 
flow of skilled workers slowed growth in a variety of Yugoslav 
industries. Hotels and restaurants in Yugoslav resort areas often 
faced seasonal shortages of trained caterers and waiters. Waiters 
would work a single season on the Dalmatian coast to gain experi- 
ence and savings, then they would emigrate to Austria, Switzerland, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

or France. Adriatic hotels usually trained a new staff each season; 
ironically, some employed guest workers of their own from Poland 
and Czechoslovakia. 

About one-third of all guest workers were women, a proportion 
that corresponded to their share in Yugoslavia's overall domestic 
work force. But striking disparities in the rates at which women 
emigrated from Yugoslavia's various regions reflected the influence 
of the country's ethnic diversity. Slightly more than 40 percent of 
all emigrants from Vojvodina and Slovenia were women, as were 
over a third of those from Serbia proper and Croatia. Women from 
Kosovo emigrated least, accounting for less than 5 percent of all 
emigres from that region. 

Guest workers returned to Yugoslavia not only for economic rea- 
sons but also because of emotional connections with their birth- 
place, family, and traditions and because of a desire by parents 
to educate their children in their homeland. With the reunifica- 
tion of Germany and the economic downturn created by the Per- 
sian Gulf crisis of 1990, Yugoslavia faced a possible large-scale 
return of guest workers from Western Europe. Many observers 
predicted that a return of skilled workers would have a positive 
effect on Yugoslavia's economy. The 1981 census showed that the 
bulk of the returning guest workers (81.7 percent) continued to 
work; only 3.2 percent became unemployed officially. Most for- 
mer peasants and agricultural workers returned from abroad to 
find new employment in nonagricultural sectors of the economy, 
indicating that they had acquired other skills and job experience 
during their years abroad. Returning guest workers unable to find 
work were entitled to some unemployment compensation if they 
paid into an unemployment compensation fund during their stay 
abroad. Prior to German reunification, guest workers in the Fed- 
eral Republic of Germany (West Germany) automatically contribut- 
ed to such funds in accordance with a bilateral agreement. 


Religious affiliation in Yugoslavia was closely linked with the 
politics of nationality; centuries-old animosities among the coun- 
try's three main religions — Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholi- 
cism, and Islam — remained a divisive factor in 1990. Forced 
conversions of Orthodox Serbs to Roman Catholicism by ultra- 
nationalist Croatian priests during World War II had made a lasting 
impression; more recendy, Serbian official spokesmen often charac- 
terized Serbian conflicts with Kosovan nationalists as a struggle 
between Christianity and Islam. Religious tension existed even in 
the most prosperous regions: in the 1980s, local politicians delayed 


The Society and Its Environment 

construction of an Orthodox church in Split and a mosque in Lju- 
bljana, both predominandy Roman Catholic cities. 

Demography and Distribution 

The distribution of Yugoslavia's major religions followed the 
country's internal borders only roughly. Serbia and Montenegro 
were under the ecclesiastical authority of the Serbian Orthodox 
Church. Macedonia had its own Macedonian Orthodox Church 
after 1967, but that republic also included many Muslim ethnic 
Albanians. Croatia and Slovenia were predominantly Roman 
Catholic, but many Orthodox Serbs also lived in Croatia, and the 
Muslim Slav and ethnic Albanian populations of Slovenia were 
growing. Bosnia and Hercegovina contained Muslim Slavs, Ortho- 
dox Serbs, and Catholic Croats. Vojvodina had significant numbers 
of Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Protestant believers; 
Kosovo was predominandy Muslim, although about 10 percent of 
the province's ethnic Albanians were Roman Catholic, and virtu- 
ally all its Serbs were Eastern Orthodox (see fig. 8). 

Besides Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, and Islam, 
about forty other religious groups were represented in Yugosla- 
via. They included the Jews, Old Catholic Church, Church of Je- 
sus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints, Hare Krishnas, and other 
eastern religions. Major Protestant groups were the Calvinist 
Reformed Church, Evangelical Church, Baptist Church, Methodist 
Church, Seventh-Day Adventists, Jehovah's Witnesses, and Pen- 
tecostal Church of Christ. 

The connection between religious belief and nationality posed 
a special threat to the postwar communist government's official 
policies of national unity and a federal state structure. Although 
postwar constitutions provided for separation of church and state 
and guaranteed freedom of religion, church-state relations in the 
postwar period were often tense when the government attempted 
to reduce church influence. From 1945 to the early 1950s, the 
authorities carried out antichurch campaigns that imprisoned, tor- 
tured, and killed many members of the clergy. The government 
subsequendy established a general policy of rapprochement, but 
until the 1980s the state still exerted pressure on many religious 
communities. Yugoslavs who openly practiced a religious faith often 
were limited to low-paying, low-status jobs. After Tito's death in 
1980, the Yugoslav government no longer pursued a consistent poli- 
cy toward the country's churches. After that time, each republic 
and province followed policies toward religion that were accepta- 
ble at home but sometimes unacceptable in other parts of the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Political liberalization in the late 1980s brought Yugoslavia's re- 
ligious communities a level of freedom unprecedented in the post- 
war period. The spring of 1990 marked the beginning of a religious 
revival throughout the country. On Easter 1990, television stations 
throughout the country covered Eastern Orthodox and Roman 
Catholic services for the first time; two weeks later, Belgrade tele- 
vision broadcast prayers marking the end of Ramadan, the Mus- 
lim holy month. With the rebirth of Western-style democracy in 
Yugoslavia, fundamental amendments were expected in laws ban- 
ning church involvement in politics, education, social and intereth- 
nic affairs, and military training. 

Religious belief declined significantly in Yugoslavia after World 
War II, but the drop was not uniform throughout the country. In 
the censuses of 1921 and 1948, religious believers accounted for 
over 99 percent of the population. Secularization followed closely 
the postwar government programs of modernization, urbanization, 
and vigorous antireligious propaganda. A 1964 survey (Yugosla- 
via's last nationwide study of religion through 1990) described 70.3 
percent of Yugoslavs as religious believers. The areas with the 
highest percentage of religious believers were Kosovo (91 percent 
of the population) and Bosnia and Hercegovina (83.8 percent); those 
with the lowest were Slovenia (65.4 percent), Serbia (63.7 percent), 
and Croatia (63.6 percent). Although hard figures were not avail- 
able, in the late 1980s signs indicated a resurgence of religious be- 
lief, especially among young people. 

Eastern Orthodoxy 

Since Byzantine times, the Eastern Orthodox churches have had 
an almost symbiotic connection to individual nation-states such as 
Greece and Russia. Yugoslavia had two main Orthodox churches: 
the Serbian Orthodox Church, present since the Middle Ages, and 
the Macedonian Orthodox Church, which split from the Serbian 
church in 1967. The Romanian Orthodox Church was also present 
in Vojvodina. An estimated 11.5 million Yugoslavs, primarily 
Serbs, Montenegrins, and Macedonians, were Eastern Orthodox 
by family background. 

The self-governing Serbian Orthodox Church was founded in 
the thirteenth century by St. Sava Nemanja, brother of the first 
Serbian king. In the centuries after its founding, the church served 
a series of kings and emperors, and it acted as the repository of 
Serbian culture during the centuries of Ottoman domination 
(1459-1829). The Serbian church supported the Karadjordjevic" 
Dynasty that ruled the Kingdom of Yugoslavia between the world 
wars. The brutal religious persecution of Orthodox priests in World 


Examples of Yugoslav religious architecture 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

War II enhanced the church's popular standing throughout Ser- 
bia. After the war, the communist regime took advantage of the 
Serbian church's loyal support of the Yugoslav state to gain legitima- 
cy in the eyes of the Serbian population. But the church soon came 
into direct conflict with the communist regime's policy on nation- 
alities and lost its secular role and influence. One result of this con- 
flict was the refusal of the Serbian church hierarchy to recognize 
the Macedonian Orthodox Church, given self-governing status by 
the Yugoslav state in 1967. 

In 1987 the Serbian Orthodox Church, headquartered in Bel- 
grade, included about 2,000 parishes; 2,500 priests, monks, and 
nuns; 180 monasteries and convents; four seminaries; and one 
school of theology. It also published ten periodicals. The Serbian 
church was very active in defending the Serbian and Montenegrin 
minorities in Kosovo. Following the upswing of ethnic tensions in 
Kosovo in the 1980s, identification as an Orthodox churchgoer be- 
came more popular in Serbia. In 1985 completion of the long- 
delayed Cathedral of St. Sava in Belgrade received government 
approval. When finished, the cathedral was to be the largest Eastern 
Orthodox church in the world. 

At various times before World War I, the Eastern Orthodox di- 
ocese in Macedonia was under the jurisdiction of Serbian, Bulgar- 
ian, and Greek Orthodox authorities. Between the world wars, the 
Serbian church was in control. Until 1958 the Serbian, Bulgari- 
an, and Greek Orthodox hierarchies recognized no distinct Macedo- 
nian nation or independent Macedonian Orthodox Church. In 
1958, however, the Serbian Orthodox hierarchy recognized the 
Macedonian dioceses by consecrating a Macedonian bishop. Shortly 
thereafter the Macedonian Orthodox Church came into official ex- 
istence, but it remained under the authority of the Serbian Ortho- 
dox Church. In 1967 Macedonian clergy proclaimed their church 
independent, prompting the Serbian Orthodox Church to refuse 
all further relations with it. Aware that a self-governing Macedo- 
nian church would enhance the sense of Macedonian nationhood 
within the Yugoslav federation, political authorities gave the church 
their full support. Without recognition from the Serbian hierar- 
chy, however, the Macedonian church remained isolated from the 
world's other Eastern Orthodox churches. By the mid-1980s, the 
Macedonian Orthodox Church had six dioceses in Yugoslavia and 
two abroad, 225 parishes, 102 monasteries, about 250 priests and 
about 15 monks, and one school of theology. 

Roman Catholicism 

The Roman Catholic Church was Yugoslavia's most highly 


The Society and Its Environment 

organized religious community. About 7.5 million Catholics — 
mainly Croats, Slovenes, Hungarians, and ethnic Albanians — lived 
in Yugoslavia. The church had eight archbishoprics, 13 bishoprics, 
2,702 parishes, 182 monasteries, 415 convents, two schools of the- 
ology, and about 4,100 priests, 1,400 monks, and 6,600 nuns. It 
also published several dozen newspapers and periodicals whose com- 
bined circulation far surpassed that of the rest of the country's re- 
ligious press. 

The Roman Catholic Church had uneasy relations with Yugo- 
slavia's communist regime throughout the postwar period. This 
was partly because its hierarchy was loyal to Rome and partly be- 
cause the Catholics supported Croatian nationalism in the early 
1970s. Many Yugoslavs retained a strong, emotional association 
between Catholicism and the war crimes, forced conversions, and 
deportations by the Croatian fascist state in World War II. 

Soon after the war, the government's agrarian reform appropri- 
ated church land. Catholic schools were closed, and formal reli- 
gious instruction was discouraged. Between 1945 and 1952, many 
innocent priests were shot or imprisoned in retribution for war- 
time atrocities. The arrest and 1946 trial of Alojzije Stepinac, arch- 
bishop of Zagreb, led to the low point of Catholic- Yugoslav relations 
in 1952. At that point, Tito severed relations with the Vatican in 
response to the elevation of the recendy released Stepinac to cardi- 
nal. Stepinac, tried for war crimes, had actually been held guilty 
of refusing to adapt the Vatican's stand on social issues such as 
divorce and education to conform with the secular requirements 
of the communist state of Yugoslavia. Stepinac also had enraged 
Tito by protesting arbitrary postwar punishment of Catholic cler- 
gy. After Yugoslavia's break with the Soviet Union in 1948, reli- 
gious repression gradually decreased as Tito sought the approval 
of the West. The state-approved funeral and burial of Stepinac in 
1961 signaled a new modus vivendi between the Yugoslav govern- 
ment and the Roman Catholic Church of Yugoslavia. 

In 1966 Yugoslavia and the Vatican signed a protocol in which 
Belgrade pledged to recognize freedom of conscience and Rome's 
jurisdiction over ecclesiastical and spiritual matters for Yugoslav 
Catholics. In return, the Vatican agreed to honor the separation 
of church and state in Yugoslavia, including prohibition of politi- 
cal activity by clergy. In 1970 Yugoslavia and the Vatican resumed 
full diplomatic relations. Nonetheless, opportunities for conflict re- 
mained. Franjo Cardinal Kuharid, primate of Croatia, touched off 
a major controversy in Serbia in 1981 by proposing rehabilitation 
of Stepinac; subsequent appeals for canonization of the cardinal 
met strong Serbian resistance. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Yugoslavia's Islamic community, the largest in any European 
country west of Turkey, was concentrated among three ethnic 
groups: Muslim Slavs, located in Bosnia and Hercegovina and 
Kosovo; ethnic Albanians, primarily in Kosovo, the enclave of Novi 
Pazar in Serbia, and Macedonia; and Turks inhabiting the same 
regions as the Albanians. Most of the Muslim Slavs and Albani- 
ans converted to Islam in the early stages of Ottoman occupation 
to gain the higher social status that Ottoman policy afforded to con- 
verts. They were the only groups in the European provinces of the 
Ottoman Empire to convert in large numbers. 

In 1930 Yugoslavia's separate Muslim groups united under the 
authority of a single ulama, the Rais-ul Ulama, who enforced Is- 
lamic religious and legal dogma and managed the affairs of the Is- 
lamic community. Headquartered in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia's Islamic 
community included about 3,000 religious leaders and 3,000 
mosques in the 1 980s. Some Yugoslav Muslim officials studied at 
Islamic institutions abroad. Financial contributions from Islamic 
countries such as Libya and Saudi Arabia helped fund many of 
the 800 mosques constructed in Yugoslavia after World War II. 
In 1985 a grand mosque was opened in Zagreb after years of de- 
lay. The only Islamic school of theology in Europe was located in 
Sarajevo, and Islamic secondary schools operated in Sarajevo, 
Skopje, and PriStina. A religious school for women, attached to 
the Islamic secondary school in Sarajevo, had a capacity of sixty. 
The Islamic community of Yugoslavia published a variety of 
newspapers and periodicals. 

Relations of the postwar communist government with the Islamic 
community were less troubled than those with the Orthodox or Ro- 
man Catholic churches. Yugoslavia's Islamic leaders generally had 
kept a low profile during World War II, although the authorities 
condemned the mufti of Zagreb to death for allegedly inciting Mus- 
lims to murder Serbs. In the 1960s and 1970s, Tito used Yugosla- 
via's Islamic community to maintain friendly relations with 
oil-producing Arab countries because Yugoslavia needed access to 
inexpensive oil. But after the 1979 fundamentalist revolution in 
Iran, the Yugoslav government reviewed its policy on potentially 
destabilizing contacts between Yugoslav Muslims and Middle 
Eastern governments. The ulama responded by disavowing all con- 
nection with the pan-Islamic movement. 

Besides mainstream Sunni Islam, the Yugoslav Muslim popu- 
lation also included several small groups such as the Bektashi der- 
vishes. Founded in the thirteenth century, the Bektashi sect was 


The Society and Its Environment 

one of the official religions of Kosovo under the tolerant policy of 
the Ottoman Turks. Its practice disregarded much of traditional 
Islamic ritual and contains some Christian elements, especially in 
areas where Christianity is the prevalent religion. After Turkey 
dissolved its Bektashi orders in 1925, the sect survived only in the 

Other Faiths 

During the Protestant Reformation, a number of Protestant com- 
munities arose in regions now included in Yugoslavia. Many initial 
Protestant conversions were later reversed in the Counterrefor- 
mation, especially in Slovenia and Croatia. The most notable 
exceptions were the Calvinist communities of Vojvodina. The 
surviving Calvinist Reformed Church in Vojvodina was mostly 
Hungarian in membership. In 1987 it had forty-three parishes, 
ninety-two affiliated offices, about sixty churches and prayer houses, 
and over forty ministers trained at theological schools in Austria, 
Hungary, and Switzerland. In the twentieth century, numerous 
Protestant faiths, including newer groups such as the Seventh-Day 
Adventists and Jehovah's Witnesses, also found a foothold in Yu- 

Much of Yugoslavia's prewar Jewish community was destroyed 
in the Holocaust, and many of the survivors emigrated to Israel 
after 1948. Yugoslavia's 1931 census recorded a Jewish popula- 
tion of 68,405. By contrast only 6,835 persons identified themselves 
as Jews by nationality in the census of 1948, and in 1981 the num- 
ber of Jews had shrunk to 5,638. The remaining Jewish commu- 
nity was organized into twenty-nine communes affiliated with the 
Belgrade-based Federation of Jewish Communities of Yugoslavia. 


History of Yugoslav Education 

Primary schooling in interwar Yugoslavia was a four-year course. 
Although enrollments more than doubled between 1919 and 1940, 
on the eve of World War II only about 27.3 percent of Yugoslav 
young people between the ages of five and twenty-four were en- 
rolled in school or receiving some kind of instruction. Only about 
4 percent of the pupils who completed primary school went on to 
secondary schools. Muslim parents remained suspicious of educa- 
tion for women, and many rural areas had no schools at all. In 
the late 1930s, about 40 percent of the population over ten years 
of age was illiterate. Striking regional disparities existed in levels 
of literacy. While over three-quarters of all Slovenes and Croats 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

could read and write, only a tenth of Kosovo's ethnic Albanians 
were literate. Yugoslavia's interwar education system was highly 
centralized, and instruction was exclusively in Serbo-Croatian. 
Macedonians and Croats especially resented Belgrade's dominance 
of education; many Croatian teachers enlisted in the pro-Nazi 
Ustase forces during the war. World War II decimated Yugosla- 
via's teacher corps and heavily damaged its education facilities. 
In 1953 about 14.5 percent of the active nonagricultural popula- 
tion had not finished four grades of elementary school, while 63.5 
percent had not completed the eighth grade. 

In the postwar period, the Yugoslav government invested heav- 
ily in rebuilding the national education system. Besides building 
new schools, libraries, and other facilities, the government took 
energetic steps to enhance the qualifications of Yugoslavia's teaching 
cadres. By 1989 the majority of teachers in primary and secondary 
schools held university degrees. In addition, schools began employ- 
ing a variety of teacher aides and specialists, including librarians, 
media specialists, medical personnel, special-education instructors, 
vocational-training specialists, and computer programmers — most 
of whom were university graduates. Within thirty years after adop- 
tion, such measures radically changed the educational base of the 
Yugoslav population. By 1981 only 2.7 percent of the active 
nonagricultural population had less than three years of primary 
school; the portion that had completed the eighth grade had risen 
to 81 . 1 percent; and 58. 1 percent of that group had at least a high 
school diploma. Of the overall population, 25.5 percent had com- 
pleted a secondary program, and 24.2 had completed eight years 
of a primary program (see table 7, Appendix). 

Primary Schools 

A 1958 education law lengthened the country's primary educa- 
tion sequence to eight years and made attendance compulsory for 
children from seven to fifteen years of age. Between 1945 and 1981, 
elementary school enrollment rose from 40 percent to 98.6 per- 
cent of all children between ages seven and ten and 92 percent of 
those between eleven and fourteen. In the same period, the num- 
ber of elementary school teachers increased more than fivefold, and 
the student-teacher ratio fell from 59 to 1 to 20 to 1 . Primary edu- 
cation in Yugoslavia's less developed regions improved dramati- 
cally, and instruction in the languages of Yugoslavia's ethnic 
minorities increased. In Kosovo the number of primary school stu- 
dents rose tenfold between the end of World War II and 1981. In 
1986 the student-teacher ratio for primary instruction in the 


The Society and Its Environment 

languages of Yugoslavia's ethnic minorities was 18.8 to 1, better 
than the Yugoslav average overall. 

Secondary Education 

Secondary education also improved noticeably in the postwar 
decades. Between 1947 and 1981, the number of students in second- 
ary and postsecondary schools rose more than sixfold, and by 1984 
more than 90 percent of the pupils who completed primary school 
continued their education on the secondary level. In 1989 the second- 
ary school student-teacher ratio in Yugoslavia overall reached 1 5 
to 1, although the ratio varied by region. 

A comprehensive curriculum reform in 1974 offered students a 
choice of postprimary instruction paths. The motivation for reform 
was to contribute more skilled workers to Yugoslav industry. The 
reform basically combined separate college preparatory and voca- 
tional schools into giant standard secondary schools in which the 
first two years of instruction were uniform for all students. In the 
third year, students were expected to choose a general career path 
from college preparatory and vocational options. 

Critics complained bitterly that the new curriculum failed to pre- 
pare students adequately to meet the country's needs. University 
officials asserted that students spent too much time in vocational 
instruction; enterprise directors complained that the vocational track 
still did not prepare enough young people to fill skilled jobs. Crit- 
ics on both sides called for a return to completely separate four- 
year college-preparatory and vocational schools. In 1990 another 
round of reforms was imminent, but Yugoslavia's economic woes 
delayed funding. Between 1977 and 1984, spending on education 
had already fallen from 5.9 percent to 3.5 percent of total national 

The amount of secondary school instruction conducted in minori- 
ty languages rose rapidly after World War II. In 1945 only 4,233 
students received such instruction; in 1985-86 the number was 
85,892. In addition to Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, and Macedo- 
nian, secondary school instruction was conducted in Albanian, Bul- 
garian, Czech, Hungarian, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Slovak, 
Turkish, and Ukrainian (see table 8, Appendix). Government offi- 
cials hoped that increasing the average education level in Kosovo 
would reduce future population growth in the region. According 
to the 1981 census, 55.5 percent of Kosovo's population over age 
fifteen had completed elementary school; this figure was only 5.2 
percent in 1953. In 1981 Slovenia had the highest literacy rate of 
the republics and provinces (99.2 percent), and Kosovo had the 
lowest (82.4 percent) (see table 9, Appendix). 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Higher Education 

Yugoslavia also made significant progress in university educa- 
tion in the postwar period. Until 1987 the system was available 
to all who could qualify. At that time, however, fiscal problems 
caused a cut in student acceptance by 7 percent, and course offer- 
ings were cut. The number of universities, art academies, and ad- 
vanced vocational schools rose from 26 in 1939 to 322 in 1987, 
and the number of students attending them increased from 20,000 
to 347,000 in the same period. Higher education in Yugoslavia 
also faced serious problems at the beginning of the 1990s. Univer- 
sity dropout rates were high, and students who remained in school 
took an average of seven years to complete a four-year degree 
and five years to finish a two-year program. High tuition and liv- 
ing expenses made it difficult for many students to attend full time 
and put university education beyond the reach of other Yugoslav 

Health Care and Social Welfare 

Before World War II, medical care in Yugoslavia was generally 
very poor. The country had only one physician for every 750 ur- 
ban residents; in rural areas, the ratio was almost twenty times 
worse. In 1990, despite overall strides in the nation's health care 
system, a wide disparity remained between urban and rural areas 
in the delivery of health care. 

Disease and Mortality 

The most frequent causes of death in Yugoslavia in 1984 were 
diseases of the circulatory system (45.2 percent of total deaths for 
men and 56 percent for women) and cancer (16.1 percent for men 
and 13.3 percent for women). Death from circulatory diseases was 
more than twice as likely in the country's developed regions as in 
the less developed areas, while in Kosovo the share of infectious 
diseases still accounted for 7.8 percent of male deaths and 10. 1 per- 
cent of female deaths in the 1980s. Increasing environmental pol- 
lution and cigarette smoking possibly were reflected in a steep 
increase in deaths from cancer and circulatory problems between 
1975 and 1986. Accidents, especially traffic accidents, accounted 
for 41 .2 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, while the suicide rate rose 
by almost a quarter between 1975 and 1989. 

Development of the Health Care System 

Poor nutrition and ignorance of hygiene and child care were nor- 
mal conditions in Yugoslavia before World War II. As a result, 


The Society and Its Environment 

Yugoslavia suffered Europe's highest death rate from tuberculo- 
sis; malaria, diphtheria, typhus, syphilis, dysentery, and whoop- 
ing cough also ravaged the country. 

After World War II, the Yugoslav state took direct control of 
the country's health care system and established a general health 
insurance program. In the early years of the program, coverage 
was inconsistent for a substantial portion of the population; pri- 
vate farmers and their families were not covered until 1959. In re- 
cent decades, however, improvements in health care and the 
delivery of health services were dramatic. Overall coverage rose 
from a quarter of the population in 1952 to over 80 percent in 1984. 
The number of physicians rose to 45,869 in 1987, and the number 
of hospital beds reached 142,427 (see table 10, Appendix). In 1990 
the system included about 280 hospitals. Health education and in- 
creased access to health care reduced the outbreak of infectious dis- 
eases to a fraction of earlier levels. Diphtheria was eradicated 
completely; the incidence of typhus fell from 3,022 in 1955 to 160 
in 1986; of syphilis from 7,248 to 300; of whooping cough from 
28,066 to 2,978; and of tuberculosis from 37,945 to 15,891. 
Maternity-related deaths and birth-related infant deaths also plum- 
meted between the 1950s and the 1980s. 

In 1987 farmers and farm workers used health care facilities about 
one-fourth as often as industrial workers. Job openings at rural 
health care facilities went unfilled despite the fact that few jobs for 
health care workers existed in the cities. Between 1965 and 1970, 
one-third of all medical school graduates left the country to find 
work. Disparities in health care between Yugoslavia's developed 
and less developed regions also were dramatic. In 1983 Slovenia 
had one doctor for every 434 persons, compared with one per 1,141 
persons in Kosovo. Likewise, Slovenian hospitals had one bed per 
128 persons in the republic; Kosovo had one bed per 334 persons. 
In Slovenia 99.7 percent of all births took place with professional 
medical care; in Kosovo professional care attended only 60.5 per- 
cent of births. 

The Contemporary Health and Welfare Systems 

Yugoslavia's 1974 Constitution requires the organization of self- 
managed communities of interest for health care to manage the 
health care system (see Socialist Self-Management, ch. 3). The com- 
munities of interest represented both the users and the employees 
of health care facilities. Thus, such groups included delegates from 
the workers' council of the health care facility, local citizenry served 
by the facility, and delegates from local enterprises contributing 
funds to the facility. Generally, each commune had a health center, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

although cooperative use of facilities was possible through agree- 
ments among individual communes. Health stations — less equipped 
facilities available for primary first aid — were more numerous. In 
1988 health centers numbered 450, health stations 2,550. 

The federal Constitution entides all Yugoslav citizens to health 
care in a variety of situations. Infectious diseases and mental ill- 
nesses judged dangerous to society received automatic treatment. 
Workers were guaranteed care for occupational diseases or work- 
related injuries. Pregnant women, infants, and preschoolers received 
comprehensive medical care. Children younger than fifteen, stu- 
dents younger than twenty-six, and citizens over sixty-five were 
entitled to general medical care. The health care system distribut- 
ed contraceptive devices, and free abortions were available up to 
ten weeks after conception or later under special circumstances. 
Federal law required that women receive uninterrupted paid mater- 
nity leave beginning at least 28 days before expected delivery and 
ending at least 105 days afterward. By 1990 some republics had 
increased minimum maternity leave to as much as one year. Work- 
ing mothers also received income compensation for time taken from 
work to care for sick children. 

Yugoslavia's social welfare system nominally provided services 
for destitute persons and families, physically and mentally han- 
dicapped persons, broken families, alcoholics and drug addicts, and 
elderly persons without relatives to care for them. In 1986 about 
3 percent of the population received services from the social wel- 
fare system. In 1984 Yugoslavia operated 340 social work centers, 
including shelters, juvenile homes, care centers for handicapped 
children, foster home placement agencies, nursing homes, and fa- 
cilities for care of the mentally handicapped and mentally ill. Al- 
together, the system employed about 2,100 social workers and 1 ,000 
other professionals in the mid-1980s. Self-managing communities 
of interest managed the centers, which provided services to 687,000 
Yugoslavs in 1984. In the socialized planning of the postwar peri- 
od, the Yugoslav education, health, and social welfare systems 
reached substantially higher standards. The average citizen benefit- 
ed from these improvements, but social protection and opportuni- 
ty remained unequally dispensed among the republics in 1990. 

* * » 

Contrasts in Emerging Societies, edited by G.F. Cushing et al., is 
an anthology of primary-source material describing socioeconom- 
ic conditions in southeastern Europe in the nineteenth century. It 
provides an excellent glimpse of life in the Yugoslav lands during 


The Society and Its Environment 

that period. The National Question in Yugoslavia by Ivo Banac is an 
exhaustive treatment of the disparate Yugoslav peoples and their 
relations in the years immediately before and after the formation 
of the Yugoslav state. Steven L. Burg's Conflict and Cohesion in So- 
cialist Yugoslavia and Pedro Ramet's Nationalism and Federalism in 
Yugoslavia, 1963-1983 discuss Yugoslavia's national question in later 
decades. Stella Alexander's Church and State in Yugoslavia since 1945 
describes the relations between the postwar communist regime and 
the Serbian Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches. The Yugo- 
slavs by Dusko Doder is an insightful and entertaining description 
of the virtues and foibles of the Yugoslav peoples in the 1970s. Koso- 
vo: Past and Present, edited by Ranko Petkovic, presents an official, 
pro-Serbian assessment of the Kosovo problem, while Studies on Koso- 
vo, edited by Arshi Pipa and Sami Repishti, presents the Albani- 
an side of the conflict. Jugoslavia, 1945-1985, edited by DuSan 
Miljkovic, contains a wealth of statistical comparisons of socioeco- 
nomic indicators for the Yugoslav republics that a non-reader of 
Serbo-Croatian can easily decipher with the help of a dictionary. 
(For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.) 


Chapter 3. The Economy 

Woman factory worker 

AFTER WORLD WAR II, Yugoslavia established a one-party 
communist regime and an economic system modeled on that of 
the Soviet Union. In 1948, however, the Soviet-led international 
communist alliance Cominform (see Glossary) ousted Yugoslavia 
and imposed an economic blockade. At this time, the Yugoslav 
leadership reevaluated Marxist doctrine and set out to develop a 
unique system of economic administration, which it labeled socialist 
self-management. This system was seen as a more accurate reali- 
zation of the Marxist theory that the means of production should 
be owned and operated by the people. By comparison, Yugoslavs 
considered the Soviet system to be statist because the Soviet state 
had simply replaced the capitalists of the West in exploiting the 
worker class. 

Under the strong hand of Josef Broz Tito, most aspects of the 
Yugoslav economy prospered from 1950 to 1979. The gross material 
product (GMP — see Glossary) rose rapidly, millions of peasants 
were given jobs in the social sector (see Glossary), industrial produc- 
tion expanded rapidly, and export of manufactured products in- 
creased substantially. Living standards also improved as personal 
incomes increased, social services were extended and improved, 
and supplies of consumer goods expanded. In the 1960s, Yugosla- 
via's market-economy reforms positioned the country as an eco- 
nomic leader of the Nonaligned Movement. 

The 1980s, however, brought a grave economic crisis. Begin- 
ning in 1979, the Yugoslav economy entered an extended down- 
turn because of increases in oil prices in 1973 and 1979, the world 
recession that began in 1979, and careless investment and borrowing 
policies pursued in Yugoslavia's rapid postwar industrialization. 
Inflation soared out of control, reaching an annual rate of 2,600 
percent by the end of 1989. Personal income, consumption, and 
labor productivity fell, and unemployment exceeded 16 percent by 
the end of the 1980s. These problems were especially serious in 
the poorer regions of Yugoslavia such as Macedonia and Kosovo. 
Foreign loans dried up at the same time, as Yugoslavia was forced 
to reschedule its US$20 billion foreign debt. Patchwork attempts 
to solve these problems generally failed. 

In January 1990, the government of Prime Minister Ante Mar- 
kovic introduced a reform package. This program included mone- 
tary reforms designed to combat inflation and give the federal 
government more control over macroeconomic policy. It drastically 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

reformed currency, wage, and price policy. Despite doubts by many 
domestic and foreign economists and domestic opposition to pain- 
ful austerity measures, the Markovic program began to stabilize 
the economy in the first six months of 1990. The new program 
was a significant break with the decade of economic policy stagna- 
tion that had crippled Yugoslavia's growth since 1979. 

Economic History 
World War II and Recovery 

Before World War II, Yugoslavia was one of Europe's most un- 
derdeveloped countries. The eradication of feudalism after World 
War I left over 75 percent of the population living in poverty and 
dependent on small, inefficient peasant farms. Economic growth, 
though steady, was modest. In 1938 per capita income was 30 per- 
cent below the world average. 

The 1941 German invasion of Yugoslavia and the subsequent 
partition of the country among Germany, Bulgaria, Hungary, and 
Italy destroyed all semblance of normal economic life. The Ger- 
mans built new factories in Slovenia and Croatia and converted 
remaining plants to produce military equipment. The peasants con- 
tinued to farm, but over 50 percent of livestock and 80 percent 
of equipment were destroyed or confiscated during the occupation. 
The communications network was sabotaged, and over half the rail- 
roads and rolling stock was demolished. Inflation was rampant, 
and barter became the prime means for transacting business. The 
most devastating blow to Yugoslavia fell on its people: over 1 1 per- 
cent of the prewar population was killed; another 25 percent was 
left homeless. 

Postwar reconstruction in Yugoslavia was financed by aid from 
the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. The 
administration provided a total of US$60 million of aid in food, 
clothing, medical supplies, seed, livestock, jeeps, and railroad stock. 
By the end of 1946, Yugoslav national income was restored to its 
1938 level. 

Application of Stalinist Economics 

With the victory of Tito and the People's Front in November 
1945, post- World War II Yugoslavia became a one-party com- 
munist state. The Communist Party of Yugoslavia (CPY) was strict- 
ly Marxist- Leninist in economic outlook and fiercely loyal to the 
centralized economic program of Soviet dictator Joseph V. Stalin. 
Supporting the Soviet Union's foreign policy in most issues and 
imitating its domestic policy, the party labeled itself the vanguard 


The Economy 

of the proletariat. Nationalization of industry, redistribution of pri- 
vate land, and collectivization of agriculture (see Glossary) were 
at the core of Yugoslav domestic economic policy as the 1950s 

Under the land reform of 1945, over 1 million hectares of land 
were confiscated from private owners and institutions. A state- 
controlled land fund was established to hold and redistribute the 
land to peasants and state farms. Local authorities set the exact 
amount of land peasants could retain, within the state parameters 
of twenty to thirty-five hectares. Despite the state landholding limits, 
a large share of agricultural activity remained in the private sec- 
tor. The state extracted a share, however, by requiring delivery 
of surplus products to state enterprises. 

Following the example of the Soviet constitution of 1936, the 
Yugoslav constitution of 1946 initiated the process of bringing all 
sectors of the economy under state control. At the program's in- 
ception, all mineral wealth, power resources, means of communi- 
cation, and foreign trade were nationalized. By 1948 all domestic 
and foreign-owned capital, excluding some retail trade and small 
craft industries and most of agriculture, had been brought into the 
social sector. 

Forced collectivization of agriculture was instituted in January 
1949, bringing the last privately owned portion of the economy 
under state control. At the program's inception, 94 percent of Yu- 
goslav agricultural land was privately owned; but by the height 
of the collectivization drive in 1950, nearly 96 percent was under 
the control of the social sector. Yugoslav planners expected that 
rapid collectivization and mechanization of agriculture would in- 
crease food production, improve the people's standard of living, 
and release peasants to work in industry. The result, however, was 
a poorly conceived program that was abandoned three years later. 

The First Five-Year Plan 

All economic activity for the period of the First Five- Year Plan 
(1947-52) was directly managed by the Federal Planning Com- 
mission, which, in turn, was closely supervised by the party. The 
objectives of the plan were to overcome economic and technologi- 
cal backwardness, strengthen economic and military power, en- 
hance and develop the socialist sector of the country, increase the 
people's welfare, and narrow the gap in economic development 
among regions. 

Economic development in the first half of the planning period 
was relatively successful; from January 1947 through June 1949, the 
plan was approximately on schedule. Then, in late 1949, agricultural 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and industrial development began to fall behind planned rates. The 
targets set were very ambitious and did not take into account Yu- 
goslavia's inadequate power resources and limited range of in- 
digenous raw materials. Primarily because of poor investment 
policy, agriculture had no hope of reaching its target of 52 percent 
growth over 1939 levels. Only 7 percent of total investment was 
earmarked for achieving that ambitious goal. The rapid industri- 
alization foreseen in the plan required vast imports of fuel, food, 
and raw materials. Because Yugoslavia's sparse and low-quality 
exports could not finance such acquisitions, it was forced to run 
a large trade deficit, most of which was financed by credits and 
loans from Western Europe and the United States. 

Following Yugoslavia's 1948 ouster from the Cominform (Com- 
munist Information Bureau — see Glossary), Cominform members 
instituted an economic boycott against the country, further slow- 
ing Yugoslavia's economic growth. Many treaties and trade agree- 
ments among the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, and Yugoslavia 
were abrogated, loans were canceled, and nearly all trade was halt- 
ed. In 1948 trade with the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe made 
up approximately 50 percent of Yugoslavia's imports and exports, 
but that figure was reduced to zero by 1950. Yugoslavia suffered 
doubly in the many instances when it did not receive goods, par- 
ticularly machinery and capital goods, for which it had already paid. 

However disastrous the effects of the Cominform blockade, Tito 
himself estimated that it accounted for less than 20 percent of the 
damage to the Yugoslav economy during the second half of the 
First Five- Year Plan. The droughts of 1950 and 1952 were an even 
greater economic disaster than the boycott. Another formidable 
burden was the need to divert substantial resources to rebuilding 
the Yugoslav military and arms industry. 

By the end of the First Five-Year Plan, Yugoslavia had become 
acquainted with the economic problems that would eventually be- 
come chronic in the 1980s: an oversized balance of payments deficit, 
significant foreign debt, low labor productivity, and inefficient use 
of capital. But the comprehensive, long-term, centrally directed 
planning approach was able to mobilize national resources to 
achieve rapid postwar development in Yugoslavia. Although in- 
efficient, the high rate of investment in the First Five-Year Plan 
ensured increased output throughout the Second Five-Year Plan 
(1957-61). From 1950 to 1960, industrial output rose faster in Yu- 
goslavia, in both per capita and total output, than in almost any 
other country in the world over the same period. 


The Economy 

Launching Socialist Self-Management 

The aim of the Yugoslav shift from Stalinist economics was to 
redefine the party as a source of ideological guidance, eliminating 
its political power over the economy. This would follow the true 
spirit of Marxism by giving the people control over their econom- 
ic destiny. "The factories to the workers" was the slogan of the 

In 1950 the Basic Law on the Management of State Economic 
Enterprises by Working Collectives was introduced to establish 
workers' participation in the management of their own enterprises. 
The basic law decentralized planning, turning it over to local com- 
munes and workers' councils and incorporated the principles of 
socialist, or workers', self-management into all aspects of public 
life. Central authorities outlined only general economic guidelines 
rather than imposing mandatory targets from a centralized com- 
mand structure. The state retained control over the appointment 
of enterprise directors and the allocation of investment resources, 
however, thereby retaining considerable de facto control over the 

In agriculture the failure of collectivization led to abandonment 
of that experiment in 1952. By that date, one-fifth of the 7,000 
agricultural collectives already had been dissolved. In March 1953, 
peasants were officially allowed to leave the collectives, and most 
of them did so. Later the same year, the state ended compulsory 
delivery of agricultural products to state enterprises. Peasants were 
left to produce what they could and to sell surpluses on the open 

The "Perspective" Five-Year Plan 

In the five years between the first and second five-year plans, 
the Yugoslav economy followed ad hoc annual plans. During this 
interval, a high rate of investment and savings was maintained. 
In 1957 the government introduced the Second Five-Year Plan, 
called the "Perspective Plan" because its stated goals were not strict- 
ly mandatory. The primary purpose of this plan was to incorporate 
the principles of socialist self-management. The plan specified scope, 
expected trends in demography and productivity, volume and al- 
location of investment, and increases in production on the federal 
level. But enterprises, communes, and republics were left to their 
own devices in reaching production levels. They devised their own 
plans, then submitted them to the Federal Planning Commission. 
That body then consulted with republic planning institutes and drew 
up the final plan according to federal government policies. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Yugoslav economists consider the Second Five-Year Plan the 
most effective postwar Yugoslav economic plan. Its achievements 
came, however, at the expense of negative impact on the interna- 
tional balance of payments, uneven domestic investment patterns 
(which once again allocated insufficient investment resources to 
agriculture), growing unemployment, inflation, and cash-flow 
problems. Nonetheless, fulfillment of the plan was declared ahead 
of schedule in 1960. 

Overhaul in the 1960s 

A movement toward greater market freedom in Yugoslavia 
spurred economic reforms in the 1960s. The Third Five-Year Plan, 
begun in 1961 , was abandoned the next year because of a growing 
economic crisis and failure to meet any plan targets at the end of 
the first year. The basic goals of that plan were to increase per- 
sonal consumption, production growth, and labor productivity 
through loosened government controls on wages and higher invest- 
ment in the production of energy, steel, nonferrous metals, chem- 
icals, and capital equipment. Particular attention went to investment 
in the less developed republics and to mechanization of agriculture. 

Economic planning in the 1960s strove to make Yugoslavia more 
competitive on the world market and to expose the economy to 
the beneficial influence of free international trade. A more liberal 
trade policy eliminated multiple exchange rates, devalued the di- 
nar (for value of the dinar — see Glossary), and reduced tariffs and 
import restrictions. In addition, the Yugoslav tourist industry 
received government support, and Yugoslavs were allowed to work 
as guest workers abroad (see Guest Workers, ch. 2). Hard-currency 
(see Glossary) remittances from tourism and guest workers became 
important sources of relief for Yugoslavia's weak balance of pay- 
ments. Unfortunately, these changes were poorly prepared and bad- 
ly implemented. Not long after the Third Five- Year Plan was 
abandoned in 1962, industrial production fell to half its 1960 lev- 
el, imports spiraled, exports stagnated, and inflation increased be- 
cause wages increased faster than productivity. 

After the Third Five-Year Plan failed, the government reverted 
to a system of ad hoc annual plans similar to those implemented 
between 1952 and 1957. Beginning in December 1962, Yugosla- 
via's leading economists and politicians launched a two-year se- 
ries of debates to identify and correct economic flaws, adjusting 
the roles of the federal government, enterprises, planning, and the 
market in economic growth and development policy. The conser- 
vative minority feared that decentralized control over investment 
and overemphasis on market forces would lead to the loss of socialist 


Fifth International Technical Exposition, Belgrade, 1961 
Courtesy Yugoslav National Tourist Office, New York 

values. Liberals, however, saw decentralized decision making and 
a greater role for market forces as the only way out of Yugosla- 
via's economic stagnation. 

The new constitution of 1963 introduced market socialism (see 
Glossary), a system that basically reflected the views of the liber- 
als in the debates of 1962 and 1963. Decision making was decen- 
tralized, market forces were allowed greater play, and the federal 
government further loosened its control over investment, prices, 
and incomes. The federal government was only to intervene with 
emergency measures in times of crisis. The self-management sys- 
tem thereby received more power and responsibility in the economic 
development of the country. 

The Economic Reform of 1965 

The reform of July 1965 consisted of thirty laws that formed the 
legislative framework for market socialism. An important goal of 
this framework was to allow enterprises to keep a larger share of 
their earned income, much of which was previously paid to the 
government. The five major components of the reform were low- 
er taxes; limited state control of investment allocations; removal 
of price controls and large adjustments to product prices, to bring 
domestic prices closer to world price levels; devaluation of the dinar 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and reduction of customs duties and export subsidies; and permis- 
sion and credit for peasant landowners to buy farm machinery. 

Economic performance in the 1950s and early 1960s was strong 
primarily because of consistendy heavy investment policies. Be- 
tween 1954 and 1965, GMP increased by an average of 8.4 per- 
cent per year. In the same period, gross industrial output increased 
at a yearly average of 12.2 percent; industrial employment, 6.6 
percent; social sector employment, 5.9 percent; exports, 11.7 per- 
cent; and fixed investments, 9.2 percent per year. In the mid-1960s, 
however, these rates began to fall because the 1965 reform caused 
excessive demand on resources, growing inflation, continuing 
balance of payments problems, and expanded unemployment. From 
1965 to 1974, average annual GMP growth dropped to 6.4 per- 
cent, gross industrial output to 7.7 percent, industrial employment 
to 3.3 percent, social sector employment to 2.9 percent, exports 
to 5.6 percent, and fixed investments to 8.2 percent per year. 

Adjustments in the 1970s 

Yugoslavia entered the 1970s in an economic crisis. Growth was 
slowing because more investment was needed to achieve each ad- 
ditional unit of growth. At 34 percent, Yugoslavia's rate of infla- 
tion was the highest In Europe in 1974, and the government 
reimposed the price controls that had been relaxed under the 1 965 
reform. Growing unemployment prompted large numbers of Yu- 
goslav workers to migrate to Western Europe. The government 
wholeheartedly supported this trend because the hard-currency 
earnings brought into Yugoslavia by the guest workers mitigated 
the effects of increased foreign debt and export stagnation. The 
disappointing results of the reform and nationalist uprisings in Croa- 
tia and Kosovo between 1968 and 1972 led Tito to end the market 
socialism experiment by putting economic policy making back under 
party control in 1974. 

The new Constitution of 1974 and the Law on Associated Labor 
of 1976 reorganized the economy from top to bottom. Large and 
medium-sized enterprises were dissolved into smaller, self-contained 
units called basic organizations of associated labor (BOALs). Un- 
der this system, workers gained more control over management 
decisions, banks, and social services. At the same time, Yugosla- 
via became more federalized as party authority was decentralized 
to republic and provincial governments and local communes (see 
Political Innovation and the 1974 Constitution, ch. 4). The new 
statutes introduced a system of self-management agreements to coor- 
dinate interaction among basic organizations of associated labor 


The Economy 

and social compacts to coordinate interaction between economic 
and political bodies. 

As this new system went into place, the economy was hit by a 
severe increase in world petroleum prices. Because Yugoslavia de- 
pended heavily on imported petroleum products, this development 
aggravated existing inflation and foreign debt. Nevertheless, Yu- 
goslavia tried to overcome its balance of payments problems by 
placing even stronger emphasis on output growth, increased spend- 
ing (particularly on nonproductive investment and consumption), 
and foreign borrowing. The result was a dramatic rise in foreign 
indebtedness and inflation and a decline in living standards. When 
petroleum prices rose again in 1979 and the world entered an eco- 
nomic recession, Yugoslavia could no longer afford to maintain 
its debt burden. Foreign loans became inaccessible, and inflation 
continued to climb. By 1980 these conditions clearly called for slow- 
ing the pace of development and adjusting the system so as not 
to jeopardize future growth. 

The Economic Management Mechanism 
Socialist Self-Management 

The system of socialist self-management remained the distinc- 
tive element of the Yugoslav economy in 1990. Following the slo- 
gan "the factories to the workers," policy makers established the 
system in the 1950s as a way of transferring economic manage- 
ment from the state to the workers. The organization of enterprises 
operating under socialist self-management was elaborated further 
in the 1974 Constitution and the Law on Associated Labor of 1976. 

The original self-management concept redesignated enterprises 
as work organizations of associated labor and divided them into 
smaller units at the level of factory departments. Each smaller unit, 
a BOAL, was a self-managed entity, financially and commercial- 
ly independent. As members of basic organizations, workers had 
the right to attend general meetings and elect and serve on work- 
ers' councils. The councils were elected bodies that formulated 
business policy and plans, made investment and borrowing deci- 
sions, approved enterprise accounts, and gave final approval to 
directors and management boards. Despite these extensive nomi- 
nal powers, however, decisions by the workers' councils were heavily 
influenced by enterprise directors, who were appointed by the 
League of Communists of Yugoslavia (LCY — see Glossary), as the 
CPY was called after 1952. Only one-third of the committees 
nominating enterprise directors could come from the councils; the 
remainder were members of local communes and trade unions, all 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

still controlled by the LCY in 1990. In the final step, the workers' 
council chose from the nominating committee's list of candidates, 
but in most cases the list contained only one name at that stage. 

Work communities were developed for white-collar clerical, ad- 
ministrative, and technical workers of the labor organizations. Also 
self-managed, the work communities resembled the BOALs but 
provided fewer rights and responsibilities to their members. Self- 
managed communities of interest were established by basic organi- 
zations to provide transportation, communications, education, and 
health services for production workers (see Health Care and So- 
cial Welfare, ch. 2). Complex organizations of associated labor 
provided vertical and horizontal integration to improve coopera- 
tion and specialization among work organizations and their com- 
ponent units. 

Another unique element of the Yugoslav economic system was 
the use of self-management agreements and social compacts. Self- 
management agreements were binding contracts among self-manage- 
ment organizations in the social sector; they were enforceable in court 
if a party failed to fulfill its obligations. The contracts provided 
for allocation among the member organizations of joint income be- 
tween wages and investment and for the sharing of risks. Social 
compacts were written among basic organizations, communities 
of interest, government economic agencies, and trade unions. They 
specified criteria for income distribution, foreign trade relations, 
employment policy, and ranking of priorities. 

Capital Ownership and the Market 

In 1990 most enterprises, government institutions, social ser- 
vices, and banks operated under the system of socialist self- 
management. All institutions employing this system were considered 
to be owned by society and not by the state, which is the owner 
in most centrally planned economies. In spite of their nominal con- 
trol, however, workers had no rights of ownership of the assets they 

Agriculture also was decentralized in the 1950s. Forced collec- 
tivization was officially abandoned in 1952, and most agricultural 
land was returned to small peasant farmers. Small-farmer agricul- 
ture dominated Yugoslavia's socialist market economy through the 
19P.0s. In 1984 private farmers accounted for 83 percent of tilled 
Ian. , 84 percent of all livestock, and 72 percent of net agricultural 
output in Yugoslavia. 

Throughout the postwar period, official Yugoslav policy was hostile 
to private enterprise, or the "small economy." In theory, only small 
entities such as peasant farms, urban artisans and tradesmen, retail 


Street market, Belgrade, stocked with produce from private farm plots 

Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

businesses, restaurants, and tourist facilities were permitted in- 
dependent ownership and operation. In the late 1980s, many promi- 
nent Yugoslav economists recommended that private enterprise be 
given full recognition and incentive and that maximum private 
ownership of land be increased from ten to thirty hectares. These 
proposals were based on the belief that the entrepreneurial spirit 
would encourage greater efficiency and higher productivity in an 
economy long hampered by the political constraints of government 

In spite of Tito's retrenchment in the mid-1960s, Yugoslavia 
moved slowly for three decades toward toleration of market forces 
in a system that originally attempted to operate in total isolation 
from the world economy. This trend toward market liberalization, 
however, gradually slowed in the 1 970s because of the movement 
toward federalism and the introduction of the social compact sys- 
tem in the 1974 Constitution. Consensual by definition, social com- 
pacts restricted independent decision making, which in turn limited 
competition among basic organizations of labor in communes and 
republics. Decentralization of economic decision-making power to 
the republic level prevented enterprises from expanding markets 
beyond their own region; by the late 1980s, this tendency had 
weakened the market system significantly. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

In January 1990, Yugoslavia began a new stage in the incorpo- 
ration of a Western-style market economy into the system of work- 
ers' self-management. According to the 1990 reforms, enterprises 
were to operate on the basis of profitability, and unprofitable firms 
previously protected by the state now risked bankruptcy. Enter- 
prises critical to national welfare, such as steel, energy, and defense- 
related industries, were excepted in the first stage of the reform. 
Although most enterprises remained in the social sector, the 1990 
program allowed workers to become shareholders in their firms and 
legalized worker strikes. Strikes had been tolerated in the late 1980s, 
but their legality had never been established. Some economic ex- 
perts predicted that by the time all the 1990 reform? w ;re in place, 
the Yugoslav economy would differ from Western rapitalism only 
in the larger proportion of state-owned enterprises in Yugoslavia. 
In 1990 the estimated gross national product (GNP — see Glossary) 
was US$120.1 billion, or US$5,040 per capita. 

Planning and Pricing 

In 1990 the Yugoslav economy ostensibly operated on a new sys- 
tem of economic planning. Throughout the 1960s and the early 
1970s, planning was "indicative": federal authorities handed down 
plans with detailed, specific goals to be achieved, with little input 
from below. In 1976 a radically new system of voluntary planning, 
called "social planning," was established. Plans of five years or 
longer were formulated from the bottom up, with the participa- 
tion and agreement of all parties concerned. 

The planning process started when federal authorities announced 
the timetable for the overall plan and major intermediate goals. 
Following the general government program, enterprises and their 
subordinate organizations drew up microplans, while macroplans 
were formulated within and among all the local governments and 
self-managed communities of interest. This was done simultane- 
ously at all levels without any hierarchical approval system. In- 
dividual plans were modified through discussion with all parties 
concerned; the result was then written into binding social contracts. 
Enterprises and other bodies constructed self-management agree- 
ments that addressed specific aspects of the plan, such as the sup- 
ply of materials and the amount of new capacity required. Annual 
assessments and adjustments provided adaptability to changing con- 
ditions. The Yugoslav economy's dependence on imported tech- 
nical equipment for growth meant that changing world markets 
often made such adjustments necessary. 

The consensual approach to planning proved ineffective in Yu- 
goslavia. It was time consuming and, because social compacts were 


The Economy 

voluntary and therefore unenforceable, plans were largely ignored 
except in rare instances of federal government intervention. Ex- 
treme decentralization of planning also meant that cooperative 
projects among republics and provinces were not well coordinat- 
ed. This inefficiency particularly hindered development of national 
solutions for maintaining the energy balance and distributing for- 
eign exchange. 

Until the 1960s, price controls were set at particular points in 
the chain of production. Such control points were the initial sale 
of a raw material and the release of a final product for sale on the 
retail market. Intermediate prices were determined by supply and 
demand. This combined pricing system worked fairly well to moder- 
ate inflation until many price controls were removed in 1964. By 
the late 1980s, pricing again was moving distinctly toward free mar- 
ket determination. The 1990 reforms removed price controls on 
85 percent of all commodities. Price controls remained only on es- 
sentials such as electricity, gasoline, oil, coal, some raw metals and 
nonmetal minerals, medicines, and railroad, postal, and telephone 

Trade Unions 

In the 1980s, membership in trade unions was officially volun- 
tary, but most workers were members and had dues deducted direct- 
ly from their pay. Trade union officials usually were LCY members 
and, because the self-management system had no evident division 
between employers and employees, officials had relatively litde 
responsibility. Their one official function was to nominate mem- 
bers of workers' councils (see Trade Unions, ch. 4). 

Before 1990, strikes, or "work stoppages" as they were eu- 
phemistically called, officially were neither legal nor illegal. The 
idea of a strike in a self-management system was theoretically con- 
radictory, because technically workers would be striking against 
themselves. Hence, Yugoslav work stoppages took the form of po- 
litical protest against the system rather than conflict between em- 
ployer and employees. The reforms introduced in January 1990 
officially declared the workers' right to strike. 

Strikes were relatively rare until the late 1970s, when soaring 
inflation and falling personal incomes generated widespread dis- 
content. In 1987, 1988, and 1989, government-imposed income 
freezes set off waves of major strikes, each lasting several weeks. 
In the first nine months of 1987 alone, 1,000 strikes were called, 
involving over 150,000 workers. The 1989 strikes involved over 
900,000 workers. Demands almost always included higher pay and 
often the replacement of management as well. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Traditionally, trade union officials opposed strikes; but in the 
late 1980s they modified this stand. In 1985 some union leaders 
broke tradition by suggesting that when workers' demands were 
justified and no other solution existed, the trade union should take 
the lead in organizing a strike. As of early 1990, no union had taken 
such action, however, and many union officials remained on record 
as opposing strikes. 

Government Revenue and Spending 

Most federal revenue was collected in the form of turnover tax- 
es and assessments by local and federal self-management commu- 
nities of interest, which had financial management responsibility 
for social services such as education, health, and pensions. Because 
a large portion of the national budget was committed to social ser- 
vices, levies by the communities of interest were an important part 
of the tax structure. The republics and provinces and the communes 
also levied taxes; their main revenue sources were the same as those 
of the federal government, but they also taxed income and per- 
sonal property. The last two categories provided little income be- 
cause the minimum income level on which income tax was collected 
was very high. Personal property taxes were collected mostly on 
private homes (see Housing, ch. 2). Peasants and private businesses 
were taxed on assessed incomes, often at very high rates that dis- 
couraged individual economic initiative. Constitutional reform 
aimed at restructuring the tax system to eliminate such restrictions. 

In 1987 the government purchased 41 percent of Yugoslavia's 
GMP through large expenditures on defense, government ad- 
ministration, and social services (see table 11, Appendix). So- 
cial services received an unusually large allotment for a country of 
Yugoslavia's modest resources. Defense took about 46 percent of 
federal outlays budgeted for 1990 because of Yugoslavia's policy 
of maintaining security and integrity as a nonaligned state (see 
Threat Perception; Military Budget, ch. 5). Other major federal 
expenditure categories were education and aid to underdeveloped 

The 1974 Constitution virtually eliminated direct federal expen- 
ditures on investment. Partly for this reason, in 1990 the federal 
government accounted for only one-quarter of total government 
spending in Yugoslavia. The remainder was disbursed by authori- 
ties at the republic or commune level. 


The banking sector was crucial to Yugoslavia's efforts to con- 
strain domestic demand, to shift resources toward export-producing 


The Economy 

sectors, and to increase investment efficiency. Laws introduced in 
1985 effectively created a new banking system and sought to bol- 
ster financial discipline, improve investment selection, and strength- 
en the commercial banks. 

Almost all financial assets and savings in Yugoslavia were held 
in banks or kept in cash in the form of dinars or foreign currency. 
The financial institutions within Yugoslavia included the central 
banking system, which consisted of the National Bank of Yugo- 
slavia and the national banks of the six republics and two autono- 
mous provinces; the commercial banking system, including 166 
basic banks and 9 associated banks; and other financial institutions 
such as internal banks and the Yugoslav Bank for International 
Economic Cooperation (YBIEC). 

The central banking system was responsible for planning and 
implementing monetary policies. But in the 1970s, the federalized 
status of the National Bank of Yugoslavia limited its control over 
the commercial banks and made it relatively powerless to carry out 
national monetary policy. Because the credit policies of commer- 
cial banks were relatively unchecked and because they were or- 
ganized on a republic basis, those banks were very powerful in 
maintaining the serious imbalance of investment and development 
among the regions of Yugoslavia. The reforms of January 1990, 
however, gave the National Bank of Yugoslavia more control over 
the operations and policies of commercial banks. 

Day-to-day commercial banking activities were carried on by 
the self-managed business or basic banks. They were local or region- 
al organizations that were nominally controlled by their founding 
local enterprises or communities of interest. In reality, because bank 
managers were politically appointed, they were heavily influenced 
by local party and government organizations. Two or more basic 
banks could form an associated bank through a self-management 
agreement. The major functions of associated banks were to pool 
resources and handle foreign exchange operations on behalf of their 
member basic banks. 

Banks, enterprises, and other financial organizations were au- 
dited by the Social Accounting Service. All banks were required 
to be members of the Yugoslav Banking Association (YBA). The 
function of the YBA was to initiate and organize cooperation among 
member banks through self-management agreements. A typical 
agreement of this type established uniform interest rates on deposits 
for all Yugoslav savings banks. 

Internal banks were financial service organizations established 
through self-management agreements among basic organizations 
of associated labor. Not considered financial institutions per se and 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

not subject to monetary regulation, internal banks were important 
as a cooperative source of funding to facilitate investment of their 
member basic organizations. Only member basic organizations and 
their workers were allowed to deposit in internal banks. 

The YBIEC was established in 1979 to provide financial sup- 
port for foreign transactions. Owned by over 300 major capital 
goods and services exporters, the YBIEC 's main responsibility was 
to extend export credit and insurance to exporters and joint ven- 
tures. In 1989 a new law transformed the organization into a joint 
stock company and expanded its ownership to include state and 
banking institutions. The YBIEC received funding from its mem- 
bers, basic and associated banks, the National Bank of Yugosla- 
via, and foreign borrowing and issue of securities. 

Structure of the Economy 
Labor and Unemployment 

Unemployment was a major problem for Yugoslavia in the late 
1980s. During that period, over 875,000 Yugoslavs worked abroad, 
and up to 25 percent of the workers employed in the productive 
social sector at home were classified as surplus labor; nevertheless, 
more than 1.2 million people were registered as unemployed in 
1988. This was about one-sixth of the total working- age popula- 
tion of Yugoslavia that year. 

Yugoslav unemployment statistics were based on the number 
of people who registered with the government as job seekers in the 
social sector. Several factors caused inaccuracies in such figures, 
however. Students often registered as job seekers in order to receive 
better health benefits; many workers registered if they were seek- 
ing a job better than the one already held; and some of the unem- 
ployed did not register because they saw no prospect of getting a job. 

Because unprofitable Yugoslav enterprises often were support- 
ed by the government and prevented from going into bankruptcy, 
workers in the social sector rarely lost their jobs before the reforms 
of 1990. Therefore, a large proportion of job seekers in the 1980s 
were young people. In 1988 over 92 percent of the unemployed 
were under age forty, and nearly 57 percent were under age thirty. 
Yugoslav unemployment also tended to be long term: according 
to official statistics for 1988, although almost one-quarter of the 
unemployed were able to find work in less than six months, almost 
62 percent were without a job for over one year, many for more 
than three years. A third characteristic of Yugoslav unemployment 
was the large regional difference in unemployment rates. In 1986 
Slovenia was at virtually full employment while the underdeveloped 


The Economy 

province of Kosovo had more than one job seeker for every two 
workers employed in the social sector. 

Several factors interacted to raise unemployment in Yugoslavia 
in the 1980s. Immediately after World War II, peasants made up 
about four-fifths of the population. Rural workers increasingly were 
forced into the cities to seek jobs, better health care, improved earn- 
ing potential, and pensions. Two government policies stimulated 
this movement. Following traditional Marxist development pat- 
terns, Yugoslavia concentrated investments in heavy industry, 
directing capital away from agriculture and further impoverish- 
ing the peasants. And the policy of discouraging nonfarm private 
business eliminated a potential alternative economic activity. 
Marxist ideology obliged social sector enterprises to absorb extra 
labor, even if it meant redundancy and decreases in labor produc- 
tivity. Between 1975 and 1988, labor distribution remained rela- 
tively stable among the major enterprise categories (see table 12, 

The economic reforms of the 1960s gave market forces more in- 
fluence in enterprise management decisions, which helped eliminate 
excess labor. Fortunately for Yugoslavia, at this time several West 
European countries required imported labor; Yugoslav workers 
were encouraged to leave the country for temporary jobs in Western 
Europe. Then the oil price shock and worldwide recession begin- 
ning in 1979 dropped labor demand in Western Europe and forced 
many Yugoslav guest workers to return home. Domestic enterprises 
returned to conditions of surplus labor and low productivity. By 
the late 1980s, however, the guest worker force was again contribut- 
ing substantial amounts of hard currency to the Yugoslav economy. 

In the late 1980s, measures such as improved health care and 
pensions attempted to raise the rural standard of living and draw 
some of the unemployed out of the cities; but in 1990 prospects 
for stemming unemployment still seemed poor. The primary goal 
of the 1990 economic reforms was to reduce Yugoslavia's run- 
away inflation. But the new anti-inflation policies aggravated the 
unemployment problem, even as they improved labor productivi- 
ty (see The Reforms of 1990, this ch.). 


After World War II, Yugoslav development policy emphasized 
growth in the industrial sector. All means of production were com- 
pletely nationalized and remained so through 1990. The high rate of 
investment in industry in the First Five-Year Plan followed the slo- 
gan "heavy industry at any cost." The cost was a serious imbalance 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

in economic development that the Yugoslav government was still 
trying to rectify in 1990 (see fig. 9). 

Postwar Policy 

Between 1949 and the late 1970s, the fastest growing industrial 
branches were oil and gas extraction and refining and manufac- 
ture of machinery for electric power generation, transport equip- 
ment, chemicals, and electric power. These branches received high 
priority because their production levels were very low at the end 
of World War II. Other priority branches that were already better 
developed in the late 1940s — such as mining of coal and ferrous 
and nonferrous metals — expanded output significantly, but growth 
rates were considerably lower than those of the top-priority indus- 
tries. Several nonpriority branches, such as furniture, paper, raw 
materials for construction, and the traditional food and beverage 
industries, expanded faster than the overall industrial average (see 
table 13, Appendix). 

After the war, industry was concentrated in the traditional 
manufacturing regions of northern Yugoslavia. Beginning in 1961 , 
industrial policy stressed locating new manufacturing facilities closer 
to sources of raw materials. This meant greater national invest- 
ment in the underdeveloped economies of Montenegro and 
Macedonia, which in turn caused discontent in Slovenia and Croa- 
tia, the much richer northern republics required to contribute large 
shares to the national investment program (see Regional Dispari- 
ties, this ch.). 

The Fifth Five- Year Plan (1976-80) promoted primary produc- 
tion: development in all energy-producing sectors accelerated, and 
domestic oil and gas exploration was intensified to reduce Yugo- 
slavia's dependence on imported fuels and minimize the effect of 
the oil crises of the 1970s. This step was also a prerequisite for fur- 
ther growth in industries with high energy consumption such as 
iron and steel, nonferrous metallurgy, and chemicals. In the late 
1970s, a renewed commitment to self-sufficiency in ferrous and non- 
ferrous metallurgy was based on exploitation and processing of 
domestic raw materials. Greater attention also went to machine- 
building industries that produced capital equipment necessary for 
the development of heavy industry. 

The Sixth Five-Year Plan (1981-85) continued the industrial 
strategy of the previous plan. Priority industries for investment were 
metallurgy, base chemicals, and machinery. At the same time, the 
plan limited expansion of production facilities in other manufac- 
turing industries. 


The Economy 


In 1987 Yugoslavia ranked third in the world in shipbuilding. 
Construction and repair of ships contributed heavily to the domestic 
economy by bringing in hard currency. In the late 1980s, the ship- 
building industry was the only Yugoslav industry exporting more 
than half its output; in 1987 thirty-seven of forty-three ships built 
in Yugoslav shipyards were sent abroad. The ninety ships planned 
for export between 1986 and 1990 were to earn about US$2 bil- 
lion. Seagoing, rivergoing, fishing, and engineering ships went to 
Liberia, the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, Norway, Finland, and 
Sweden. Receiving countries used Yugoslav ships for a variety of 
purposes, from transport of fruits and vegetables to outfitting the 
Soviet navy. Major shipyards were the Uljanik Shipyard at Pula, 
the May 3 Shipyard at Rijeka (the largest in Yugoslavia), the Split 
Shipyard, and the Dunavbrod Association of inland shipyards, 
based in Zagreb. Jugotanker, a firm based at Zadar, had one of 
the world's largest tanker fleets. 


Among major metallurgical facilities were the Trepca Metallur- 
gical Combine in Kosovo, which produced zinc, tin, and refined 
silver and gold; the Metal Semifinished Products Industry at 
Slovenska Bistrica in Slovenia, specializing in alumina processing; 
the Smederevo Metallurgical Combine, known for microalloys and 
automobile steel important in replacing imported metals; the Zor- 
ka Plant at Sabac in western Serbia, which produced sheet and 
finished metals; and the Topola Foundry, also in western Serbia, 
important for cast iron and modular metals for the automobile in- 
dustry. In 1987 the metallurgy industry contributed one-third of 
Yugoslavia's total exports (US$4.2 billion). In the 1980s, however, 
many of Yugoslavia's steel-producing industries faced stagnation 
because of hard-currency shortages that curtailed the import of cold- 
rolled steel used in finishing. Outdated extraction technology and 
weak infrastructure hindered enterprises that relied on domestic 

Automotive Industry 

The extensive Yugoslav automotive industry was dominated by 
the Red Banner (Crvena zastava) group of plants, located in 
Kragujevac and several other cities. Red Banner produced pas- 
senger automobiles such as the Yugo, Zastava, Una, and Florida; 
commercial and delivery vehicles; and machine tools. In 1989 half 
the enterprise's production was exported, primarily to France, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

(87.0% SOCIAL, 13.0% PRIVATE) 




Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Statistiflo g odiinjak 
Jugoslav^, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 101. 

Figure 9. Gross National Product (GNP) by Sector, 1975 and 1988 


The Economy 

Poland, the Soviet Union, the German Democratic Republic (East 
Germany), and the United States. In joint production agreements 
with firms in France, Poland, the Soviet Union, Italy, and East 
Germany, Red Banner contributed vehicle components, machine 
tools, and spare parts. 


Production of chemical fertilizers, rubber, plastics, ammonia, 
liquefied gas, coke, and petroleum byproducts was vital to Yugo- 
slav self-sufficiency in the 1980s. The large petrochemical and 
oil-refining facility built by Dow Chemical on the north Adriatic is- 
land of Krk became the chief Yugoslav petroleum processing plant. 
Although Yugoslavia had litde prospect of independence from for- 
eign oil suppliers, the Krk plant enhanced its independence at the 
petrochemical processing stage. Other major petrochemical and 
chemical facilities included the Chemical Industry at Pancevo, the 
Petroleum Industry of Zagreb, and the Chemical Production In- 
dustry at Prahovo in eastern Serbia. The main customers for Yu- 
goslav chemicals and petrochemicals in the late 1980s were the 
Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, with some sales to Britain, Ita- 
ly, France, Belgium, Greece, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and 
the United States. 

The Industrial Structure in 1990 

By the 1980s, four decades of intensive investment had yielded 
significant expansion in the range and depth of Yugoslav industri- 
al output. In 1986 the largest proportions of national industrial out- 
put came from production of electrical energy (12.5 percent); food 
processing, machinery, and transport equipment (each almost 1 1 
percent); textiles (over 10 percent); metalworking (8.2 percent); 
and chemicals (6.9 percent). Because industrial policy in the 1970s 
emphasized domestic self-sufficiency in manufactured goods, domes- 
tic markets received larger proportions of industrial output from 
that time; Yugoslav industry was able to meet a high percentage 
of domestic demand for consumer goods under these conditions. 

Despite its impressive growth, Yugoslav industry in 1990 was 
beset by a number of problems. Imbalances in investment since 
the 1950s had resulted in an inadequate supply infrastructure for 
electric power, water, and transport. In addition, many domestic 
firms were unable to meet customer demand because of shortages 
in raw materials, components, and spare parts for machinery. In 
some industries, low quality precluded export of Yugoslav goods. 
Decentralization of investment decision making in the 1960s frustra- 
ted interregional investment. Neither federal nor republic authorities 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

had sufficient investment funds to finance expansion of basic in- 
dustries, and enterprises were reluctant to place funds outside their 
home republics. In this way, republics and provinces became eco- 
nomically isolated from one another. The 1990 reforms were 
designed to improve capital mobility and structural imbalances by 
giving the federal government more power in macroeconomic 
policy-making areas such as investment targeting. 

By the end of the 1980s, the agricultural predominance of the 
1940s had given way to an industrial system whose diversity resem- 
bled that of the developed West. In 1987 one-quarter of the coun- 
try's population was employed in agriculture, compared with 
three-quarters in 1945. In 1987 agriculture and fishing contribut- 
ed only 1 1 percent of the Yugoslav GMP, compared with 45 per- 
cent from manufacturing and mining. 


Yugoslavia has abundant fertile farmland. Throughout the post- 
war period, the private sector predominated in both amount of land 
tilled and production. In 1987 the 2.6 million privately owned farms 
in Yugoslavia accounted for 84 percent of all agricultural land. The 
social sector in agriculture included large agroindustrial complex- 
es, or combines, which also processed the food they produced and 
dominated the food processing industry. The agricultural social sec- 
tor also included state farms, owned and operated directly by the 
state, and general agricultural cooperatives. Most of the farms in 
the social sector were located in the north, in the Pannonian Plains 
of Vojvodina and eastern Croatia. All government agricultural in- 
vestments and subsidies were reserved for state farms and general 
agricultural cooperatives; this meant that social sector farming was 
usually more technologically advanced than private sector farm- 
ing. Nevertheless, private farms far exceeded those in the social 
sector in overall basic equipment, livestock holdings, and land cul- 
tivated (see table 14, Appendix). 

Over 65 percent of arable land in Yugoslavia was devoted to the 
cultivation of cereals, particularly corn, wheat, and rye. The prin- 
cipal nonfood crop was tobacco, which supplied the domestic 
cigarette industry; hemp, cotton, and hops also were widely culti- 
vated and processed domestically. Almost all the cotton and more 
than half of the tobacco came from Macedonia, while more than 
60 percent of hops were grown in Slovenia. Collective farms on 
the Pannonian Plains produced corn, wheat, sugar beets, potatoes, 
and sunflowers. All regions of the country produced wine, each 
area with its own characteristic varieties. Yugoslavia was also known 


Collective dairy farm, Becej Vojvodina 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

for cultivation of orchard fruits, particularly plums, apples, pears, 
and peaches. 

Pigs, sheep, horses, and cattle were the main types of livestock 
raised in Yugoslavia. Pigs and poultry were raised for meat, cattle 
for meat and dairy products, and sheep mainly for wool. Serbia 
was the largest pig-breeding area; the large Muslim populations 
of Bosnia and Hercegovina and Kosovo limited pig breeding in 
those regions. Sheep raising was centered in the uplands of Serbia 
and Macedonia; beef and dairy cattle were raised in all the north- 
ern republics. Live animals and meat products were two of Yu- 
goslavia's largest export items in the late 1980s. 

Irrigdiion, flood control, drainage works, and facilities for the 
distribution and storage of produce were adequate only in some 
regions of Yugoslavia in 1990. Construction of such agricultural 
infrastructure required heavy capital expenditure that was often 
unavailable because of the chronic undercapitalization of Yugo- 
slav agriculture. Thus, Yugoslav farming enterprises remained 
highly vulnerable to weather conditions in the 1980s. For this rea- 
son, and because of population growth and higher nutritional ex- 
pectations after World War II, Yugoslavia was a net importer of 
agricultural products through the entire postwar period. The United 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

States, the Soviet Union, Australia, and Canada were Yugoslavia's 
main suppliers of food, mostly grain. 

In the 1980s, the Yugoslav agricultural sector performed ineffi- 
ciently. The food distribution system was weak, farm incomes were 
low, and until the 1990 reforms agricultural prices were under strict 
control. Moreover, because most investment funds were earmarked 
for the social sector, state farms showed higher yields than farms 
in the much larger private sector. State agricultural investment poli- 
cy thus prevented application of modern agricultural methods in 
over 80 percent of agricultural activity, resulting in inefficient use 
of large amounts of agricultural machinery and artificial fertiliz- 
ers. The long-standing imbalance of agricultural investment and 
the importance of the private sector were recognized in the 1980s 
by the federal government's Green Plans (see Glossary), which 
devoted special attention and funding to agriculture and officially 
recognized the private sector as the most important supplier of farm 
produce. The Green Plans did increase crop yields somewhat, but 
in the late 1980s they were unable to overcome the inherent weak- 
ness of investment and infrastructure policy. 

Energy and Mineral Resources 

Energy policy in the late 1980s was aimed at reducing depen- 
dence on foreign sources and utilizing domestic power resources 
more fully. For conventional power generation, the Yugoslav power 
industries began replacing heavy oil with coal in thermoelectric 
generators and relying more heavily on hydroelectric stations. De- 
velopment of nuclear power generation was limited by public 
resistance (especially after the Chernobyl' disaster in 1986) and by 
lack of domestic technology and nuclear fuel. 

The southern portions of Yugoslavia were richer in lignite (soft 
coal) and hydroelectric potential, while the more prosperous north- 
ern areas produced all the country's crude petroleum and one-third 
of its total electrical power (see fig. 10). Yugoslavia always had an 
overall shortage of energy resources: natural gas and oil reserves 
were meager, low-caloric lignite (soft coal) was by far the predomi- 
nant type of coal, and other fuel deposits remained unexploited 
because of insufficient funding for exploration and equipment. In 
1990, because of poor funding support and conflicting regional in- 
terests, Yugoslavia still lacked a complete nationwide electric trans- 
mission grid. Industry regularly experienced power shortages caused 
by weaknesses in the transmission system and lack of generating 
capacity. Periodic emergency measures to restrict energy consump- 
tion included limits on use of private automobiles and stricter speed 


The Economy 

limits. In the late 1980s, the Croatian power industry was near 
bankruptcy, and the Yugoslav oil industry faced collapse. 

In 1989 Yugoslav wells supplied only 26 percent of domestic raw 
petroleum requirements; the main foreign suppliers were the Soviet 
Union, Iraq, and Libya. Significant amounts of domestic petrole- 
um and natural gas came only from wells in the sedimentary rock 
of the Pannonian Basin. Lack of proper equipment and up-to-date 
technology limited exploration of several large deposits believed 
to exist in that area. In 1968 extensive natural gas prospecting and 
some oil prospecting began in the Adriatic Sea, assisted by heavy 
foreign investment. In 1988 Southern Adriatic I near Ulcinj in 
Montenegro became the first offshore oil well to go into operation 
with support from a domestic interrepublican investment group. 
Despite declining foreign participation and lower international oil 
prices, Adriatic exploration continued in 1990 because of Yugo- 
slavia's strong need to improve the balance of domestic versus im- 
ported fuel supply. The Adria Pipeline was the major supply line 
of petroleum connecting the Adriatic port at Krk Island to indus- 
tries and refineries in the interior of the country. 

Production of natural gas increased significantly in the 1980s 
with the opening of the Molve field in Croatia in 1985 and three 
wells in the northern Adriatic in 1989. Molve increased national 
production by one-third, yielding 1 billion cubic meters annually. 
Yugoslavia remained heavily dependent on the Soviet Union for 
natural gas in 1990, although Adriatic exploration continued. In 
1985 construction began on a pipeline connecting the Soviet Union 
with Macedonia; in 1986 the Yugoslav natural gas distribution sys- 
tem included about 2,880 kilometers of pipeline. 

Coal was the most important fuel for Yugoslav energy genera- 
tion in the late twentieth century; 75 percent of domestic coal went 
to thermoelectric plants. Total coal reserves were estimated at 22 
billion tons in 1985, and total production remained around 70 mil- 
lion tons yearly in the late 1980s. In 1990 hard coal production 
was less than in the 1960s, but production of lower-quality brown 
coal and lignite remained steady through the 1980s. The center 
of the lignite industry was the Tito Mines complex at Tuzla in the 
Pannonian Basin. Yugoslavia's only deposits of high-grade bitumi- 
nous coal were in relatively small reserves in Istria in northwest 
Croatia, eastern Serbia, and Bosnia. Potential new reserves had 
been located but not yet evaluated in 1990. 

In spite of the importance of coal to the Yugoslav economy, in- 
efficiency in managing power resources led to significant waste in 
the coal industry. Shaft mine output increased throughout the 1980s, 
but at the expense of decreased productivity rates, wasted resources, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Figure JO. Industrial Centers and Natural Resources, 1990 

abnormal wear on equipment, and unusually high production costs. 
Surface mining of Yugoslavia's lignite reserves also was mis- 
managed. Although Kosovo contained the largest lignite field in 
Europe and 50 percent of Yugoslavia's coal reserves, inefficien- 
cies in energy planning limited Kosovo's contribution to 15 per- 
cent of the country's actual coal supply in 1988. 

The potential for developing hydroelectric power in Yugoslavia 
in the 1980s was greater than for development of fossil fuels. From 
1956 through the 1980s, production of electricity from hydroelec- 
tric sources exceeded that from all other sources. Despite heavy 
investment in this area, however, only an estimated 20 percent of 
Yugoslavia's hydroelectric potential was in use in 1990. Many ob- 
stacles hindered access to resources in mountainous watersheds of 
the Drina, Bosna, and Neretva rivers (see fig. 6). Costs were very 
high for building power stations in difficult terrain and for transmit- 
ting power across hundreds of miles of mountains to consumers. In 
the 1980s, the largest provider of hydroelectric power to Yugoslavia 


The Economy 

was the joint Yugoslav- Romanian Djerdap Hydroelectric Station 
on the Danube River. 

KrSko, Yugoslavia's first nuclear power station, was designed by 
the United States firm Westinghouse; it began transmitting power 
from its site in eastern Slovenia in 1982. In 1987 KrSko produced 
about 5 percent of Yugoslav domestic electric power. After its con- 
struction, however, further nuclear development became problemat- 
ic. Although Yugoslav uranium deposits in eastern Serbia were 
believed sufficient to fuel additional nuclear reactors, policy mak- 
ers feared the results of Yugoslav dependence on foreign nuclear 
fuel suppliers. In 1990 the KrSko plant still imported all its nuclear 
fuel from the United States. At the other end of the generation 
process, Yugoslavia had no good sites for nuclear waste disposal. 

In 1986 Yugoslavia began looking for foreign credits to build 
four new nuclear plants. However, environmental and political fac- 
tors and the prospects of increasing the foreign debt made this an 
unpopular program by the late 1980s. Policy makers feared that 
new plants would divide the country into western and eastern 
nuclear spheres, exacerbating Serbian-Slovenian economic and po- 
litical disputes. The KrSko plant and a projected plant in Prevlaka 
in western Yugoslavia were financed by Western partners; three 
other projected plants in Serbia, Macedonia, and Montenegro were 
to be financed by the Soviet Union. Hot interregional disputes post- 
poned building of these plants into the 1990s and weakened na- 
tional resolve to continue a program of nuclear power generation. 

Yugoslavia was endowed with a wide variety of ferrous and non- 
ferrous ores. About 80 percent of the country's iron ore reserves 
were located at VareS and Ljubija in Bosnia and Hercegovina, with 
other major deposits in Slovenia and Macedonia. A poor trans- 
portation network and lack of suitable fuels near the highest grade 
deposits hindered exploitation of those ores. Yugoslavia could prob- 
ably have been self-supporting in iron ore if resources were fully 
exploited, but in 1990 the country was still a net importer of iron 
ore, scrap, and semifinished steel. 

Yugoslavia also was rich in several nonferrous metals. Bosnia 
and Hercegovina produced 56 percent of the country's bauxite, 
while Kosovo's Trepca Metallurgical Combine, the largest lead- 
and-zinc center in the country, enabled that province to produce 
47 percent of Yugoslavia's lead and zinc ores. Kosovo also sup- 
plied a substantial part of Yugoslav chromium. The Bor and Maj- 
danpek areas of Serbia were the only copper sources in the country, 
and Serbia also provided most of Yugoslavia's antimony. Macedo- 
nia contributed chromium, manganese, and uranium, and the most 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

productive mercury mines in Europe were located at Idrija in the 
Julian Alps of Slovenia. 

Many of Yugoslavia's mineral deposits were in inaccessible areas 
remote from sources of energy. Massive capital investments were 
needed for the roads and communications necessary to reach many 
untapped reserves. But Yugoslav industry often lacked the capac- 
ity to absorb available mineral resources, and much raw and semi- 
finished material was exported in return for manufactured goods. 

Transportation and Telecommunications 

The reconstruction period of 1945-47 emphasized repair of the 
transportation network destroyed during World War II. Even in 
1990, road and rail communications in many regions, particular- 
ly the mountainous areas of Kosovo, eastern Bosnia, and southern 
Serbia, were still inadequate (see fig. 1 1). In addition, the Dinaric 
Alps, running along the Adriatic coast, were an obstacle to effi- 
cient transport of interior resources to the coast for shipping. Only 
two main rail lines, the Zagreb-Split line and the Sarajevo-Ploce 
line, cut from the interior to seaports. These deficiencies had a pro- 
found effect on the ability of Yugoslavia to develop its mineral and 
hydroelectric resources. 

Transportation lines in the northern lowlands and southward 
along the Vardar and Morava rivers were better developed because 
they served international traffic and linked the republic capitals 
of Ljubljana, Zagreb, Belgrade, and Skopje. Routes from Italy and 
Austria converged at Ljubljana, and several important road and 
rail lines ran north into Hungary from the area between Zagreb 
and Belgrade. 

The tourism boom that began in the 1960s led to the construc- 
tion of a number of new highways, most important of which was 
the Adriatic Coastal Highway running from Rijeka to the Albani- 
an border. From that highway several link roads were built into 
the interior. In 1990 plans called for the interior roads to link the 
Adriatic Coastal Highway with the Brotherhood and Unity High- 
way, which ran from Yugoslavia's northern border with Austria 
through Ljubljana, Zagreb, Belgrade, and Skopje and across the 
southeastern border into Bulgaria. Two-thirds of the highway were 
to be open as a six-lane road in the mid-1990s, with the southern 
portion remaining a two-lane road. In 1990 about 106,000 kilo- 
meters of Yugoslav roads had hard surfaces, and another 15,100 
kilometers had dirt surfaces. In 1987 some 3 million passenger au- 
tomobiles and 207,000 trucks were registered in Yugoslavia. 

In 1990 the country had about 9,300 kilometers of rail lines, of 
which about 3,800 kilometers were electrified. All rail lines were 


Trepca Metallurgical Combine, Kosovo 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

standard-gauge, 1.435-meter track; 10 percent of them were dou- 
ble track in 1988. Yugoslavia had 184 usable airports in 1988, of 
which 54 had permanent-surface runways and 23 were longer than 
2,440 meters. The largest international airports were in Belgrade, 
Zagreb, Ljubljana, Sarajevo, Skopje, Dubrovnik, Split, Titograd, 
Maribor, and Zadar. The Yugoslav national airline, Yugoslav Air 
Transport (Jugoslovenski Aero Transport — J AT) flew 5.8 million 
passengers in 1986. 

In 1988 the Yugoslav merchant marine included 269 ships, total- 
ing 5.4 million deadweight tons; Yugoslavia also owned twenty- 
one ships, totaling 347,000 deadweight tons, registered in Liberia 
and Panama. The merchant marine fleet included 134 cargo, 72 
bulk, 15 container, 14 roll-on roll-off ships, and 9 petroleum tankers. 
Yugoslavia also had 1,194 river craft, which navigated inland on 
1 ,620 kilometers miles of rivers, 640 kilometers of canals, and lakes 
Scutari and Ohrid. The major Adriatic ports were Rijeka, Split, 
Bar, and Plote; Belgrade was the major inland port, located on 
the Danube. 

In the 1980s, telecommunications in Yugoslavia were quite ad- 
vanced in comparison with the national transportion systems. The 
Yugoslav Radio and Television Network (Jugoslovenska Radio- 
televizija) operated 250 radio and television stations in 1986; its 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

main broadcasting centers were in Belgrade, Ljubljana, Sarajevo, 
Novi Sad, Pristina, Skopje, Titograd, and Zagreb. Both national 
and local programming were offered, and Radio Koper also broad- 
cast in Italian. In 1986 about 4.8 million radios and 4.1 million 
television sets were in use in Yugoslavia. Two multipurpose satellite 
dishes of the International Telecommunications Satellite Organiza- 
tion (Intelsat) were located in Yugoslavia, supporting international 
telex, television, and telephone communications. The government- 
operated national telephone system included ten phones per 100 
residents in 1982; all phones were direct dial by 1980 and were 
evenly divided between business and residential installations. 

Foreign Trade 

Unlike other East European countries, Yugoslavia had no cen- 
tralized foreign trade plan, nor was trade controlled by a central 
foreign trade ministry or a small number of state trading organi- 
zations. Although the government encouraged production for ex- 
port, enterprises themselves took part in making trade policy. The 
Law on Associated Labor of 1976 established self-managed com- 
munities of interest for foreign economic relations in each repub- 
lic and province; those organizations determined what goods their 
jurisdiction should import. The communities of interest included 
representatives of local basic organizations of associated labor, 
banks, and other organizations involved in trade. Their principal 
missions were to maximize export profits and to limit imports to 
comply with the federal deficit ceiling. 

Historical Background 

Adherence to the Soviet model after World War II meant that 
foreign trade was controlled entirely by the state, contact with the 
Western industrialized countries was kept to a minimum, and 
domestic resources were used as much as possible in the process 
of industrial development. Therefore, exports were viewed merely 
as a device for obtaining essential imports, and many items were 
manufactured within the country although they could have been 
imported much more cheaply. In 1948 foreign trade amounted to 
less than 10 percent of Yugoslavia's GNP. Most trade activity was 
bilateral commodity exchange with other socialist countries. Over 
two-thirds of pre- World War II Yugoslav foreign trade had been 
with Western Europe, but by 1948 over 50 percent of imports and 
exports involved Cominform countries. 

Immediately following Yugoslavia's expulsion from Cominform 
in 1948, trade with socialist countries dropped to zero. This sud- 
den change meant that between 1948 and 1950 the total value of 


Figure 11. Transportation and Pipeline Systems, 1990 


The Economy 

Yugoslav exports fell by nearly 50 percent and imports by 25 per- 
cent. Yugoslavia was forced to turn to the Western industrialized 
nations to obtain capital equipment, fuel, and raw materials for 
the intense industrial development called for in the first two five- 
year plans. Throughout the 1950s, United States and West Euro- 
pean credits and grants were vital in sustaining industrial growth 
in Yugoslavia. 

As early as 1961, new foreign exchange and foreign trade poli- 
cies stressed liberalization and decentralization. The driving moti- 
vation of the reform of 1965 was to bring Yugoslavia into the world 
market. This meant removal of foreign trade barriers and open 
economic competition with foreign enterprises. Theoretically, those 
developments would spur greater efficiency in the domestic mar- 
ket and make Yugoslav goods more competitive on the world mar- 
ket. As a result, Yugoslavia could sell its competitive goods on the 
international market and halt production of items that could be 
imported more cheaply. The domestic market remained under the 
protection of partial government price support until Yugoslavia 
could be fully transformed to a market economy and the dinar made 
convertible to Western currency. 

Trade in the 1970s was greatly influenced by Yugoslavia's de- 
pendence on oil imports and a worsening balance of payments. In- 
creases in world oil prices in 1973 and 1979 accelerated import costs, 
whereas export growth was slow. The Fifth Five- Year Plan 
(1976-80) failed to transfer emphasis to technologically advanced 
industries able to replace imports and expand exports. Balance of 
payments constraints slowed domestic activity in 1972, in 1975-76, 
and in 1979-81. In addition, the world recession at the end of the 
1970s caused net interest payments on foreign debts to increase 
considerably, net receipts from Yugoslavs working abroad to 
decline, and foreign lenders to withdraw. 

In 1980 Yugoslavia owed over US$18 billion to Western credi- 
tors. Because the only way to shift the debt was to increase exports, 
the slogan adopted for trade policy in the 1980s was "export by 
any means." Exports accelerated, and prices for them dropped. 
By 1986 the Yugoslav trade deficit with the European Economic 
Community (EEC — see Glossary) had dropped to US$1 billion 
from its 1980 level of US$4 billion. But this drop was more a func- 
tion of decreased non-oil imports, required to conserve hard cur- 
rency reserves, than of increased exports. 

Trade with the industrialized West dropped sharply in the 
mid-1980s, from a 55.6 percent share in 1978 to 43.3 percent in 
1984. During this period, debt owed to Western Europe reached 
60 percent of the total Yugoslav debt. In response, a piecemeal 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

policy rescheduled some debt, sought loans from new Western 
sources, and continued repayment of at least the interest on exist- 
ing debts. 

After massive devaluations in the dinar in 1989, that currency 
was pegged to the West German deutsche mark and declared con- 
vertible in January 1990. Set at seven dinars to the deutsche mark, 
the dinar was to move parallel with the DM against other Western 
currencies. This provision allowed citizens as well as enterprises 
to convert dinars to Western cum icy upon demand. At the be- 
ginning of the 1990s, economists predicted that the value of Yu- 
goslav exports would continue to rise to record levels and the foreign 
debt would be manageable; in the early stages of the reform, the 
"new" dinar proved more stable than most economists had ex- 

Exports and Imports 

Yugoslavia's exports in the late 1980s consisted mainly of 
manufactured goods, ores, and simple processed goods. Over one- 
quarter of goods sold abroad were machinery and transportation 
equipment (see table 15, Appendix). This was a relatively high 
proportion of sophisticated exports, considering that among Eu- 
ropean nations Yugoslavia ranked low in per capita income. Main 
export customers were Italy, the Soviet Union, France, Austria, 
Czechoslovakia, the United States, and the Federal Republic of 
Germany (West Germany). Live horses and meat products were 
Yugoslavia's most important agricultural exports. The largest single 
meat export, veal, was shipped primarily to Greece. Meat export 
declined in the late 1970s because of EEC trade barriers, a rise 
in domestic meat consumption, and feed shortages; but between 
1985 and 1987, total meat product exports more than doubled, ris- 
ing well beyond the 1980 level. Yugoslavia ran trade deficits in 
merchandise of US$1.5 billion in 1985, US$2.2 billion in 1986, 
US$1.4 billion in 1987, and US$619 million in 1988. 

Throughout the postwar period, Yugoslavia was a net importer 
of raw materials, fuels, iron and steel products, and capital equip- 
ment (see table 16, Appendix). Chief suppliers of petroleum 
products were the Soviet Union, Iraq, Libya, and Algeria. Ma- 
chinery and transportation equipment, also imported in large 
amounts, came principally from West Germany, Italy, the Unit- 
ed States, the Soviet Union, Britain, and Czechoslovakia. In the 
category of raw materials other than petroleum, Yugoslavia bought 
oilseeds and coal from the United States; wool from Australia; cot- 
ton, coal, and iron ore from the Soviet Union; and cotton from 


Mostar loop, part of the Belgrade highway system 
Courtesy Yugoslav National Tourist Office, New York 

Trading Partners 

Yugoslavia's trade policy followed the complete realignment of 
its foreign policy after expulsion from the Cominform in 1948. By 
the 1960s, structural reform and entry into the international mar- 
ket had broken down many economic and social barriers between 
Yugoslavia and the outside world. Although the Soviet Union re- 
mained Yugoslavia's largest trading partner throughout the 1980s, 
the emergence in 1986 of West Germany as Yugoslavia's top source 
of imports typified increased emphasis on trade with Western Eu- 
rope (see table 17, Appendix). Beginning in the 1980s, Yugosla- 
via traded with developing countries more selectively than it had 
in previous decades, when the Yugoslav economy was more able 
to absorb the commercial losses associated with such ventures. 

Yugoslavia's growing trade deficit greatly influenced its trade 
with Western industrialized nations in the 1980s. Many measures 
were adopted to cut all but essential imports from the West and 
encourage import-substituting domestic industries. But the import 
of expensive Western technology often was a prerequisite for es- 
tablishing such industries. On the export side, over half of Yugo- 
slav exports still went to the East European members of the Council 
for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon — see Glossary) in the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

1980s, but only the more demanding Western markets (and limited 
Third World transactions) paid hard currency for Yugoslav goods. 

The Industrialized West 

Yugoslavia became a member of the General Agreement on 
Tariffs and Trade (GATT— see Glossary) in 1965, when Tito's 
reform program brought tariff and trade regulations into line with 
international practice. The International Monetary Fund (IMF — 
see Glossary) began substantial loan support to Yugoslavia in 1965. 
Although the United States provided Yugoslavia substantial finan- 
cial aid throughout the postwar years, Yugoslavia's trade with the 
industrialized West focused on Western Europe. In the 1980s, eco- 
nomic relations with that region, which was also the greatest source 
of foreign loans to Yugoslavia, became even more important. A 
1981 agreement with the EEC allowed Yugoslavia to sell 70 per- 
cent of its industrial goods duty free in EEC markets. This con- 
cession led to a Yugoslav policy of large-scale below-cost export 
to Western Europe and to resentment from EEC members whose 
products were undercut. The quality of Yugoslav products often 
remained unsatisfactory to West European markets, however, and 
competition increased as EEC members granted concessions to their 
former colonies in the 1980s. Overall trade between Yugoslavia 
and the EEC fell by 15 percent between 1980 and 1985. The trade 
deficit with the EEC was cut by 75 percent in the same period (from 
US$4 billion to US$1 billion), but only because of severe cuts in 
imports associated with Yugoslavia's overall economic decline. 

The Common Agricultural Policy of the EEC, designed to pro- 
tect EEC farmers from low-priced outside competition, excluded 
most Yugoslav agricultural products from that market in the 1980s. 
In the late 1980s, Yugoslavia's trade imbalance crisis brought EEC 
concessions in the sale of specific products such as wine and veal, 
but clothing, textiles, and most produce remained subject to EEC 

Full membership in the EEC became a goal of Yugoslav eco- 
nomic policy in the late 1980s, and the media discussed the prospect 
constandy; in 1990 Prime Minister Ante Markovic officially 
declared that recent economic and political reforms qualified his 
country for inclusion. In response, the EEC strongly encouraged 
Yugoslav emulation of Western market economics and extended 
favorable financial terms wherever possible. Nonetheless, formid- 
able reasons remained to delay full membership. One major ob- 
stacle, the Yugoslav trade deficit with the EEC, had virtually 
disappeared by 1989. But Yugoslavia would also have to eliminate 
all duties and accept all EEC standards to include itself in the EEC 


The Economy 

free trade zone; the Yugoslav economic structure did not permit 
such changes in 1990. 

Politically, in 1990 Yugoslavia was still far from the genuine na- 
tional multiparty system required of EEC members, and continued 
regional conflict jeopardized the long-term credibility of overtures 
by the Markovic government. Yugoslavia's strongly neutral inter- 
national position also was a negative factor until Austria, neutral 
but wealthy, applied for EEC membership in 1989. Meanwhile, 
Yugoslavia had established special trading relationships with EEC 
members West Germany and Italy (accounting for 70 percent of 
Yugoslavia's EEC trade in 1989), as well as most members of the 
neutralist European Free Trade Association (EFTA — see Glossary). 
In 1988 the EEC granted a five-year extension of Yugoslavia's spe- 
cial commercial status. West European experts generally agreed 
that if it remained politically stable, Yugoslavia would be admit- 
ted to the EEC ahead of former Comecon members such as Poland 
and Hungary. 

The Soviet Union and Its Allies 

Seven years after the embargo of Yugoslavia by the Soviet Un- 
ion and its allies, trade relations with the Soviet Union began to 
improve. In 1955 and 1956, the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, 
Poland, and East Germany granted credits to Yugoslavia totaling 
US$40 million, at rates considerably below standard World Bank 
(see Glossary) rates. By 1964 Yugoslavia had gained observer sta- 
tus in Comecon, and some meetings of that organization were held 
in Belgrade. Because trade with the Soviet Union consisted main- 
ly of exchanging Yugoslav consumer goods, machines, ships, and 
transportation equipment for critical Soviet oil, Yugoslavia was at 
the mercy of its larger partner. In the 1980s, the Soviet Union first 
raised the price of oil independendy of world prices, then arbitrar- 
ily reduced imports of Yugoslav consumer goods. Continuation 
of Soviet oil supply arrangements into the 1990s also damaged Yu- 
goslavia's image as a nonaligned country qualified for inclusion 
in Western economic groupings. Soviet oil supply became less relia- 
ble in 1990 when the Soviet economy experienced a domestic oil 
shortage and cut foreign deliveries. And the machinery and equip- 
ment that Yugoslavia exported to Comecon countries required raw 
and semifinished materials bought with hard currency, making the 
Comecon connection an indirect hard-currency drain in this respect. 
Buying oil from the Soviet Union, however, required no hard cur- 
rency and provided a market for low-quality Yugoslav consumer 
goods. For Comecon members, trade with nonaligned Yugoslavia 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

was a convenient way of obtaining Western products whose tech- 
nological restrictions made them unavailable by direct purchase. 

The Third World 

As a founding member of the Nonaligned Movement, Yugosla- 
via established and maintained commercial relations with a large 
number of Third World countries (see Nonalignment, ch. 4). But 
trade with the underdeveloped countries never approached the level 
of trade with Western Europe or the Soviet Union. In 1987 total 
trade volume with Iraq, Yugoslavia's largest Third World part- 
ner, was about one-sixth that with the Soviet Union and one-fifth 
that with West Germany. Between 1979 and 1987, both imports 
from and exports to Third World countries declined slightly as a 
proportion of the respective Yugoslav totals. 

In the 1980s, two factors increasingly defined Yugoslavia's trade 
policy with the Third World: the need for hard currency and the 
need to limit dependency on Soviet oil by keeping other channels 
open. Both considerations encouraged commercial activity with oil- 
rich countries such as Iraq, Iran, Libya, Algeria, Angola, and In- 
donesia. Because those countries also sold oil to the West, they were 
able to pay their Yugoslav partners in hard currency. 

In the 1980s, Yugoslav energy and machine-building industries 
were especially active in start-to-finish construction of electric power 
plants and hydroelectric stations, power transmission lines, irri- 
gation systems, and other major construction projects in selected 
Third World countries. Two firms, Energoinvest of Sarajevo and 
Energoproekt of Belgrade, represented groups of Yugoslav enter- 
prises that acted as contractors in such cases. In 1988 Yugoslav 
construction services abroad were valued at US$1 .4 billion. In 1990 
Yugoslav fuel industries were active in joint oil and natural gas 
exploration in Syria, Tunisia, Libya, Angola, and Algeria. 

Yugoslav consumer goods, most notably consumer electronics 
from the NiS Electronics Industry, vehicles from the Red Banner 
auto plants, and footwear, also went to Third World markets. Major 
customers were India, Egypt, Iran, and Iraq. 

Guest Workers and Tourism 

Beginning in the 1960s, Yugoslavia earned considerable hard- 
currency income from so-called "invisibles": remittances from Yu- 
goslav guest workers working abroad and from tourists visiting from 
countries whose currency was convertible into dinars. These remit- 
tances were important to the Yugoslav budget, particularly in the 
mid-1970s when they bridged the gap in the trade balance and 
produced surpluses in the balance of payments. Beginning in the 


Beach at Dubrovnik, one of Yugoslavia 's major tourist areas 
Courtesy World Bank (Hilda Bijur) 

early 1970s, changes in financial laws encouraged Yugoslavs work- 
ing abroad to deposit foreign currency savings in Yugoslav banks. 
Remittances, which averaged US$2 billion in the late 1970s, be- 
came the richest source of hard-currency income for the Yugoslav 
economy. In the late 1980s, unofficial hard-currency income played 
a visible role in stimulating activity such as construction of private 
housing. Through 1990 about 375,000 workers had invested in Yu- 
goslav firms after returning, and another 160,000 had started pri- 
vate businesses. 

Yugoslavia was already an exporter of surplus labor before World 
War II. The Tito government actively discouraged that practice 
until the early 1960s, however, when growing unemployment al- 
tered official policy. Beginning with the reform of 1965, govern- 
ment policy encouraged workers to go abroad. In 1981 there were 
875,000 Yugoslavs working abroad, mostly in West Germany and 
Austria (see Guest Workers, ch. 2). 

Generally speaking, heavy reliance on tourism is not wise poli- 
cy for a developing country because that industry is highly sensi- 
tive to seasonal fluctuations and uncontrollable economic and 
political events. But from 1961 , when 1 million tourists visited Yu- 
goslavia, the figure increased steadily to over 9 million in 1988, 
under government support for the tourist industry that had begun 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

in the early 1960s. Besides its monetary contributions to the na- 
tional balance of payments, tourism produced a quick return for 
those employed in the hotel, restaurant, and service industries. In 
real terms, income in those industries increased about 1.7 times 
between 1965 and 1988. Tourism also stimulated the building, 
transportation, food manufacturing, and handicrafts industries. 

Foreign Exchange 

Because Yugoslavia's industrial strategy did not stress exports, 
few domestic enterprises were established to satisfy export demand. 
This meant a scarcity of foreign exchange throughout the postwar 
years, especially in the 1980s. Such a condition presented two major 
problems: allocation of scarce foreign exchange reserves and main- 
tainance of a positive balance of payments. The Yugoslav govern- 
ment experimented with various ways to allocate foreign exchange. 
Until 1986 the retention ratio system allowed exporters to retain 
only a share of their foreign exchange earnings, requiring the rest 
to be diverted to the National Bank of Yugoslavia. This system 
created much discontent because enterprises that generated a con- 
siderable amount of foreign currency frequently had to apply for 
administrative allocations, which they frequently did not receive. 
At the same time, because Slovenia and Croatia earned much of 
Yugoslavia's foreign currency, the retention ratio system allocat- 
ed larger proportions of the receipts to those two republics. This 
exacerbated disparities in economic development and nationalist 
conflicts between the richer and poorer republics. Moreover, allo- 
cation from above conflicted with the principle of independence 
inherent in socialist self-management. 

A new system established in 1986 was directed toward estab- 
lishing a free market in foreign exchange. All foreign exchange 
receipts were to be surrendered to authorized banks at official ex- 
change rates. Enterprises needing foreign exchange to pay for im- 
ports then applied to the banks, which determined the amount each 
enterprise needed by its use of foreign exchange the previous year 
and export performance in that year. This system never worked 
because there was never enough foreign currency to satisfy demand . 

In 1987 the government tried to apply a law under which for- 
eign exchange was allocated by a system of functional priorities. 
The top priority was the servicing of foreign debts and other for- 
eign contracts. This was followed by needs of net exporters, pri- 
ority needs of federal agencies and organizations, imports of fuel, 
and, lasdy, imports of consumer goods. To compensate firms for 
their loss of retention rights under the previous ratio system, the 
federal government set up a system of export subsidies. This system 


The Economy 

destroyed incentives to export, which in turn cut the influx of for- 
eign currency. In 1987 the Yugoslav government failed for the first 
time to pay interest on its foreign debt. As part of its agreement 
in May 1988 to reschedule Yugoslavia's foreign debt and provide 
new loans, the IMF forced the Yugoslav government to relax for- 
eign exchange controls and open an effective foreign exchange mar- 
ket. Foreign exchange reserves amounted to US$7.5 billion in early 

Managing the Crisis of the 1980s 

Between 1975 and 1980, the Yugoslav social product fell, and 
inflation reached an annual rate of 50 percent. When the interna- 
tional oil shock of 1979 hit, policy makers realized they could not 
continue an economic development strategy based on heavy for- 
eign borrowing and inefficient investment at home. In 1983 the 
Long-Term Economic Stabilization Program was released by the 
government's Krajgher Commission. The commission reexamined 
Yugoslavia's development priorities and formulated a revised strate- 
gy for the 1980s. Self-management would remain at the center of 
the system, but substantial reorientation would occur. Important 
elements were coordination of investment between industrial and 
agricultural sectors, diversification of energy resources, greater in- 
vestment in technical development, and improved incentives for 
the private sector, now recognized as the most efficient part of the 
national economy. Workers, whose wages had increased faster than 
their productivity under the self-management system, would be sub- 
ject to wage austerity programs to restore the balance. 

Although the party overwhelmingly endorsed the long-term pro- 
gram, influential conservatives blocked practical application of 
Krajgher Commission programs. In 1983 the Federal Assembly 
(SkupStina) passed only eight of twenty-five major legislative 
proposals; it postponed decision on the remainder, many of which 
would have activated parts of the long-term program. The events 
of 1983 set a precedent for a new round of economic bickering and 
regional finger pointing that delayed meaningful reform another 
seven years. 

Inflation and Foreign Debt 

Inflation continued to spiral during the 1980s. In 1987 it had 
reached 150 percent annually; by early 1989 it had reached 1,950 
percent. In the same period, foreign debt rose, unemployment re- 
mained high, living standards fell, and regional economic dispari- 
ties widened. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

In 1 988 Yugoslavia had the highest per capita foreign debt in 
Europe, totaling over US$20 billion (see table 18, Appendix). In 
May 1988, the Yugoslav government signed an agreement with 
the IMF that provided new foreign loans and rescheduled the debt, 
in return for which the government agreed to cut inflation by care- 
fully limiting expansion of domestic bank credits. This was the first 
attempt to use monetary policy to control Yugoslav inflation. 

Living Standards 

When the world recession of 1979 forced many Yugoslav guest 
workers to return home, strong political pressure forced social sector 
enterprises to take up the slack by hiring surplus workers. This 
caused social sector productivity to fall by 20 percent from 1979 
to 1985; real personal income of social sector employees dropped 
25 percent and, despite the forced overemployment, unemploy- 
ment in this sector increased from 14 percent in 1984 to nearly 
20 percent in 1989. In 1989 an estimated 60 percent of Yugoslav 
workers lived at or below the minimum income level guaranteed 
by the state, and the standard of living had fallen by 40 percent 
since 1982 — returning that indicator to the level of the mid-1960s. 
Average monthly take-home pay for an employee in the social sector 
was the equivalent of US$170 in 1989. Yugoslav officials estimat- 
ed that closing unprofitable enterprises under the 1990 reforms 
might cause 2 million more workers to lose their jobs in the early 

Regional Disparities 

The substantial autonomy given subnational governments in 
managing their own economic development prevented the six 
republics and two provinces from developing cross-boundary eco- 
nomic relationships, and the political fragmentation of Yugosla- 
via's uniquely loose federal structure stymied efficient exchange 
of goods and services. Stark economic disparities among regions 
remained unmitigated throughout the 1980s despite numerous fed- 
eral programs to redistribute wealth by integrating the natural 
wealth of poorer regions (such as the coal and minerals of Kosovo) 
into the national economy. 

The three northern republics, Slovenia, Croatia, and most of 
Serbia, emphasized high technology in building production capacity 
and attracting foreign investment. By contrast, the less developed 
southern regions, especially Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, and 
southern Serbia, stressed traditional, labor-intensive, low-paying 
economic activity such as textile manufacture, agriculture, and han- 
dicrafts. This contrast produced sharp differences in employment, 


The Economy 

investment, income potential, and social services among the eight 
political units of the federation. For example, in the late 1980s aver- 
age personal income per social sector worker in Macedonia was 
half that of a similar worker in Slovenia. Especially in Kosovo and 
Macedonia, poor economic and social conditions exacerbated long- 
standing ethnic animosities and periodically ignited uprisings that 
threatened civil war (see Regional Political Issues, ch. 4). 

Meanwhile, the federal government continued to divert the earn- 
ings of prosperous Slovenia and Croatia into its Fund for Under- 
developed Regions in the late 1980s. The Slovenes, who contributed 
25 percent of Yugoslavia's hard-currency export earnings in 1989, 
were especially irritated by the requirement to pay as much as 20 
percent of the republic's income to subsidize nonproductive en- 
terprises in other republics; this issue fueled the drive for Sloveni- 
an secession. In 1990 Slovenian leaders announced curtailment of 
their contribution to the Fund for Underdeveloped Regions be- 
cause they had lost hope that the mismanaged central government 
would ever invest their earnings profitably and because the local 
economy was declining. Croatia threatened similar action if the 
federal government did not make concessions. By this time, eco- 
nomic autonomy and membership in the EEC had become attrac- 
tive and plausible alternatives for Slovenia and Croatia (see 
Slovenia; Croatia, ch. 4). 

The Reforms of 1990 

In December 1989, the Markovic government presented an eco- 
nomic reform package. The program was actually a continuation 
of a 1989 reform that attempted to introduce a "united market econ- 
omy" compatible with the existing self-management system. Of 
the twenty-four laws included, the Federal Assembly passed seven- 
teen outright; six remained provisional. At the heart of the pro- 
gram's monetary reform was a new "heavy" dinar, worth 10,000 
old dinars, pegged to the deutsche mark, and convertible with all 
Western currencies. 

Wages were frozen and income pegged to rates 18 to 32 percent 
higher than wage rates of December 15, 1989. Price controls were 
removed on 85 percent of commodities. The only exceptions were 
essential categories such as electricity, fuels, medicine, raw metals 
and minerals, and rail, postal, and telephone services, which re- 
mained under government control. 

The program strengthened existing bankruptcy and liquida- 
tion laws forbidding state subsidy of enterprises and banks operat- 
ing at a loss, and bankrupt enterprises no longer received bank 
loans. At the time of the 1990 reforms, one-quarter to one-third of 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Yugoslavia's 27,600 enterprises were showing losses, and the debts 
of 100 Yugoslav banks totaled US$2 billion to US$3 billion. To 
mitigate the inevitable effects of massive layoffs from enterprise 
closings, the program allotted US$150 million in aid to the poorest 
regions, primarily in the south, and US$100 million for social secu- 
rity and unemployment compensation. An anticipated foreign loan 
of US$500 million was to pay for those allotments. The West con- 
tributed US$1 billion in 1989 to cancel the deficit in the banking 
system and implement the new reforms, and as much as US$4 bil- 
lion more was promised if the program took effect. 

Although Markovic's entire package was not accepted by the 
Federal Assembly, the new program had immediate effects and 
received mostly positive reactions in Yugoslav society. By April 
1990, the monthly inflation rate had dropped to zero, from its De- 
cember 1989 monthly rate of 64.3 percent. The revaluation of the 
dinar was credited with an export increase of 21 percent and an 
import increase of 32 percent in the first four months of 1990, as 
well as an increase of US$3 billion in foreign currency reserves 
in the first six months of 1990. By mid- 1990 the government was 
claiming 1 ,200 new joint investment deals with foreign firms, worth 
an estimated US$588 million, and a total of 10,200 new enterprises 
formed. Industrial productivity fell by 8.7 percent, however, be- 
cause of the extreme monetary controls used to decrease the money 
supply and stop inflation and because of the large number of un- 
profitable enterprises closed by the reforms. Domestic investment 
slowed drastically, but the reforms brought much less civil unrest 
than anticipated. Some industries continued paying wages unrelated 
to productivity, nullifying the incentive effect of federal wage re- 

The initial phase of the Markovic reform package was a six-month 
preliminary step. When phase two began in mid- 1990, policy mak- 
ers began seeking nonmonetary controls for inflation, encourag- 
ing banks to keep interest rates down, funding an agency for 
development of small and medium-sized enterprises, and reshap- 
ing investment incentives. The overall goal of these steps was to 
mitigate the initial shock effect of the austerity program and gradu- 
ally allow market forces to stimulate a new round of investment 
geared to private enterprise. The next round of constitutional 
amendments, introduced in 1990, included provisions to facilitate 
large-scale changes of public to private ownership, to reform tax 
policy to encourage private investment, and to create a new credit 
distribution role for the National Bank of Yugoslavia. After the 
first stage of reform, progress was uneven; in 1990 many indus- 
tries remained under obstructionist political appointees who had 


The Economy 

no stake in overall economic progress. Resistance was especially 
strong in Serbia, where one in three enterprises was unprofitable 
at the end of 1990. Even the optimistic Markovic cautioned that 
future steps in economic reform would cause additional social dis- 
comfort, but in 1990 Yugoslav economic planning finally had made 
a discernible break with its ineffectual past. 

* * * 

Several useful books and essays on the Yugoslav economy are 
available in English. The Economy of Yugoslavia by Fred Singleton 
and Bernard Carter, though dated, provides a comprehensive 
historical and structural view of the Yugoslav economy. Harold 
Lydall's Yugoslavia in Crisis fully analyzes the economic situation 
of Yugoslavia at the end of the 1980s and the systemic problems 
that created that situation. Several chapters of Yugoslavia in the 1980s, 
edited by Pedro Ramet, analyze the economic crisis of the early 
1980s, forecast future developments, and provide abundant statis- 
tics. Yugoslavia: A Fractured Federalism, edited by Dennison Rusinow, 
contains two chapters that describe the causes and results of Yu- 
goslav political-economic policy making in the 1980s. The Yugo- 
slav government's Statisticki godisnjak Jugoslavije (Statistical Year- 
book of Yugoslavia), published in Serbo-Croatian with an English 
key, lists exhaustive statistics on all sectors of the economy, as well 
as economic indicators since 1970. (For further information and 
complete citations, see Bibliography.) 


Chapter 4. Government and Politics 

Josip Broz Tito 

cijalisti£ka Federativna Republika Jugoslavia — SFRJ) came into 
existence in 1945 as a state with nominally socialist political insti- 
tutions, dominated until 1990 by a single communist party. In that 
forty-five-year period, the country's political structure evolved in 
three major stages: as an orthodox member of the monolithic Soviet- 
led communist alliance (1945-48); as a nonaligned communist dic- 
tatorship (1948-80) whose slogan was "brotherhood and unity" 
among its constituent republics; and as a decentralized federation, 
with no dominant leader and most aspects of political power cen- 
tered at regional levels. 

During the last two stages, Yugoslav political life emphasized 
"development from below," a principle that gave substantial eco- 
nomic and political decision-making power to local communes and 
self-managed industrial enterprises. This feature, unique to Yu- 
goslavia and present even during the powerful dictatorship of Josip 
Broz Tito (1945-80), focused political power in official and un- 
official local groupings. Also unique to Yugoslavia was the con- 
cept of statutory autonomy in nearly all governmental functions 
for each of the six republics in the federation. The inefficiency of 
the national political system was masked until 1980 by the charis- 
ma of Tito, who provided enough national unity for economic and 
political reforms to be accomplished when necessary. 

As early as 1948, the Yugoslav system experimented with polit- 
ical configurations unknown in previous Marxist or Stalinist prac- 
tice. Although Yugoslavia began political reforms far ahead of other 
European communist states, opposition political parties only be- 
came legal in the late 1980s, a development stimulated partly by 
reform elsewhere in Eastern Europe. The League of Communists 
of Yugoslavia (LCY — see Glossary) retained substantial control over 
the government's appointive and legislative functions, but inno- 
vations made party control of the country's diverse ethnic and eco- 
nomic groups problematic as early as the 1960s; the political 
management of economic reform, urgendy needed by 1980, was 
complicated by the same factors. 

Tito was aware that without him the Yugoslav political system 
would be a fragile entity. Therefore, in his last years of power he 
attempted to restructure the system. His preparations for the re- 
gime that would follow him emphasized decentralization of power 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

to accommodate the unique structure of the Yugoslav federation: 
six republics and two provinces of widely varying political and ethnic 
backgrounds, as well as contrasting economic levels. To prevent 
yet another occurrence of the hostile fragmentation for which the 
Balkans had become a symbol, Tito tried to equalize the political 
power of the republics, minimizing the potential for domination 
by one republic that might stimulate others to secede from the fed- 

The institutionalized political balance that followed Tito's thirty- 
five years in office had several effects. Regional power meant that 
federal decision making required unanimous consensus among the 
republics. The veto power of each republic promoted pressure pol- 
itics and negotiations outside statutory institutions in the process 
of reaching consensus; public accountability for decisions was thus 
obscured. At the same time, the unanimity requirement and equal 
rotation of top government positions among the republics and 
provinces fostered regional participation, provided an image of na- 
tional unity, and prevented the emergence of a new dictator. In 
fact, no strong national leader emerged in Yugoslavia throughout 
the 1980s. The system gave the six republics free exercise of for- 
mal and informal political leverage on behalf of their own agen- 
das, which often clashed. 

Historical regional animosities and ambitions resurfaced in the 
first post-Tito decade. Serbia, with the strongest leadership of any 
republic, revived the concept of a strong centralized state under 
Serbian domination; but other republics, defending their sovereignty 
in a decentralized Yugoslavia, used Tito's consensual policy-making 
apparatus to block Serbian ambitions. In the process, the LCY, 
sole legal all- Yugoslav party for forty-five years, split in 1990 over 
the question of how much political diversity should be tolerated 
at the national level. At that point, the viability of the federation 
(whose demise was widely predicted as early as 1980) came under 
even more serious scrutiny. 

Political Evolution after 1945 

From 1945 to 1980, Josip Broz Tito was the only leader of the 
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. His influence on Yugoslav 
politics began several years before the war and remained formida- 
ble a decade after his death. Tito presided over a series of political 
experiments that separated Yugoslavia from the Stalinist model of 
centralized decision making. Tito's political culture replaced that 
model with autonomous grass-roots political institutions; nonethe- 
less, it retained the external trappings and ideology of a monolithic 
Marxist state. Before the end of Tito's regime, however, the inherent 


Government and Politics 

contradiction of that combination began to erode national institu- 
tions, including the LCY. 

Breaking with the Soviet Union 

Several years before World War II, Tito had survived Joseph 
V. Stalin's purge of Yugoslav communists in the Soviet Union. 
In fact, Stalin had sent him back to Yugoslavia to reinvigorate the 
party there. After the war, Tito was able to unite the country be- 
cause his leadership of the Partisan (see Glossary) forces against 
the Nazis had made him a charismatic national hero and put his 
followers in a position to assume power. Under Tito's patronage, 
an entire generation of wartime Partisans became the postwar ruling 
class of Yugoslavia. 

In 1948 Yugoslavia received international attention as the first 
country to break from Stalin's monolithic communist alliance, and 
the country subsequently maintained an independent foreign policy 
that made it a prototypical postwar "nonaligned nation." Shortly 
after his break with Stalin, Tito began a process of guaranteeing 
political equality to the constituent republics. At that time, Tito 
deemed a degree of regional autonomy necessary to maintain his 
own internal political support because the external backing of the 
communist alliance no longer provided legitimacy to his regime. 

Tito's first constitution (1946) was modeled on the Soviet con- 
stitution of 1936. This constitution included direct communist party 
control over all aspects of state activity, no recognition of the con- 
stituent republics as political entities, and no stipulation of individual 
civil liberties. Tito refused to make his country fully subservient 
to the Soviet alliance, however, and in 1948 Stalin ejected Yugo- 
slavia from the Cominform (Communist Information Bureau — 
see Glossary). From that time, Tito fashioned an independent 
political leadership that soon moved away from the rigid state domi- 
nation of Stalinism. 

The Sixth Party Congress (1952) was a watershed of Yugoslav 
political change, driven primarily by the need to prove that Yu- 
goslavia could create a form of socialism superior to the Stalinist 
version from which it had recently split. In that meeting, liberal 
forces led by Milovan Djilas (a long-time close adviser of Tito) creat- 
ed a constitution that partially separated party and state political 
functions and restored some political rights to the constituent repub- 
lics and some civil rights to individuals. At that time, constitutional 
foundations were also built for workers' control over enterprises 
and expanded local government power. The Federal People's As- 
sembly established by the 1953 constitution contained two nouses — 
the Federal Chamber, directly representing the regions, and the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Chamber of Producers, representing economic enterprises and work- 
er groups. The federal government executive branch (the Federal 
Executive Council — FEC) included only the five secretariats deal- 
ing with national affairs and foreign policy. Foreign policy became 
the most important function of the FEC. The LCY retained ex- 
clusive political control, based on the Leninist credo that the state 
bureaucracy would wither away and that a multiparty system would 
only bring more cumbersome bureaucratic institutions. 

Through the remainder of the 1950s, the economic decentrali- 
zation of the 1953 constitution increased friction among the repub- 
lics, which sought advantages in national allocation and resource 
redistribution policy. By 1960 this friction generated a new wave 
of constitutional change, aimed at preserving regional autonomy 
while restoring economic policy decisions to the federal level. 

The 1963 Constitution 

The regional divisions that prompted constitutional change also 
delayed concrete action by two years, as the constitution's framers 
sought language satisfactory to all political factions. By 1963 a new 
constitution had been prepared under the guidance of Eduard 
Kardelj, Tito's chief theoretician, with substantial input from liberal 
legal scholars. The new document reflected the perceived need for 
recentralization: the parliamentary Federal Assembly (SkupStina) 
was divided into one general chamber, the Federal Chamber, and 
four chambers given specific bureaucratic responsibilities. In an 
effort to end regional conflict and promote national representation 
of the Yugoslav people, the constitution directed that individual 
republics be represented only in the Chamber of Nationalities, a 
part of the Federal Chamber. This provision was especially im- 
portant in ensuring continued contributions from all regions to fed- 
eral development funds for the poorer republics. 

Other provisions of the new constitution increased decentrali- 
zation instead of reducing it. Tito retained his position as presi- 
dent of the federation but renounced his state position as president 
of the FEC , a change that further separated party and state func- 
tions. The 1963 constitution also introduced the concept of rota- 
tion, which prohibited the holding of higher or lower level executive 
positions for more than two four-year terms. Other notable provi- 
sions extended human and civil rights and established constitution- 
ally guaranteed court procedures. All these provisions were unique 
among the constitutional systems of contemporaneous communist 

Although the 1963 constitution reflected the liberal leanings of 
Yugoslav leadership in those years, substantial power existed outside 


Government and Politics 

the institutional structure. Aleksandar Rankovic, state secretary 
in charge of the secret police, led an obstructionist bloc that op- 
posed economic reform in the 1960s and advocated a return to the 
pre- 1953 strong party role. In the many deadlocks between the liber- 
al and obstructionist groups in this period, Tito was always the 
final arbiter. He generally supported economic reform but resist- 
ed decentralization of state power. 

Post-Rankovid Diversification 

In 1966 the party's liberal majority convinced Tito to oust 
Rankovic by proving that the security chief had grossly abused his 
power. With secret police activity reduced and the conservatives 
lacking a leader, new political forces blossomed in Yugoslavia. In 
1967 a series of constitutional amendments, instigated by Bosnia 
and Hercegovina, enlarged the role of the Chamber of Nationali- 
ties in federal decision making. The amendments specified separate 
functions for that chamber and canceled the centralizing force the 
1963 constitution had exerted on the Federal Assembly. A new 
generation of younger, more pragmatic leaders began replacing 
conservative, older party members, and issues of nationalism and 
economics now were debated hotly and openly in the LCY. With 
politicians no longer allowed to hold concurrent federal and party 
positions, the bodies of state government grew more independent 
of party domination. (In the next twenty-plus years, however, na- 
tional leaders moved constantly from party to state positions and 
back, thus largely preserving the connection.) 

After 1966 the Yugoslav media more openly criticized govern- 
ment and party policy, and economic enterprises became more truly 
"self managing." In 1967 and 1968, the party openly debated 
whether delegates to the Federal Assembly could ignore constituent 
demands to take an "all- Yugoslav" position. Largely because most 
politicians identified such a position with Serbian centralist domi- 
nation, delegates were held to strict pursuit of regional interests. 
Discussion of such issues signaled the rekindling of ethnic nation- 
alist conflicts that had been muffled by totalitarianism in the past, 
and the resolution of the delegate responsibility question indicat- 
ed ascendancy of nationalist forces. Beginning in 1966, ethnic con- 
flicts sparked frequent demonstrations throughout the country. 
Bosnia and Hercegovina complained in 1966 that development 
funding was insufficient; the longstanding rivalry between Serbia 
and Croatia resurfaced in 1967; and Albanians demonstrated in 
Kosovo and Macedonia in 1968. A national-liberal coalition of 
Croatia, Slovenia, and Macedonia fought for additional decentrali- 
zation and against anticipated Serbian efforts to dominate the federal 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

government. Although that alliance disintegrated in 1969, its liberal 
approach dominated policy making until 1971 . In an effort to regain 
control of the republics, the LCY decentralized its structure, giv- 
ing much more decision-making power to the party at the repub- 
lic level and lower. 

In both party and state political structures, the new regional in- 
fluence enormously complicated federal policy making. Now ev- 
ery decision required consultation and compromise. The FEC began 
consulting its equivalents in each republic before performing its 
role in national executive decision making. The compromise process 
often led to stalemate, especially on the explosive issue of econom- 
ic development in the richer versus the poorer republics. To stream- 
line the process, Tito intervened in 1969 to form the new Executive 
Bureau for the party Presidium. The Executive Bureau was a central 
party organ empowered to mediate disputes among the parties of 
the republics. (The party Presidium itself, comprising representa- 
tives from each republic, was inherendy fragmented along region- 
al lines.) Later that year, however, the Executive Bureau was 
helpless when demonstrations in Slovenia over distribution of World 
Bank (see Glossary) funds prompted divisive statements by party 
leaders of other republics and strong Slovenian criticism of the sys- 
tem. In 1970 the Croatian party began a protracted, powerful cam- 
paign against the existing federal system, which it described as a 
tool for Serbian domination of the other republics. The chief goal 
of the Croatian campaign was to change federal policy so that a 
single republic could veto any federal action. 

Tito again responded by creating a new federal body, this time 
in the apparatus of the state rather than the party. Like the party's 
Executive Bureau, the collective State Presidency included the most 
qualified representatives of each republic and was intended to pro- 
vide a forum for national compromise, insulated from regional pres- 
sures. Meanwhile, the outburst of ethnic factionalism that surfaced 
in the late 1960s became especially severe in Croatia. Between 1969 
and 1971 , protracted negotiations for new amendments to the fed- 
eral constitution only heightened Croatian separatism. The Croa- 
tian nationalists, based in the powerful Matica Hrvatska cultural 
organization, split the Croatian party and launched a massive 
separatist propaganda campaign that resulted in serious clashes with 
ethnic Serbs in Croatia. 

Political Innovation and the 1974 Constitution 

Finally, Tito (himself a Croat) quelled the separatist movement 
by purging the Croatian party in 1972. The Croatian purge 
stemmed the demand for veto power by individual republics and 


Government and Politics 

paved the way for party recentralization and ratification of the con- 
stitutional amendments promoted by Tito. The State Presidency 
was added to the federal structure with Tito as its head, once again 
the sole symbol of both party and state leadership. In general, be- 
ginning in 1972, interregional consensus came more easily, although 
members of central party organs still were chosen by regional, not 
central, decision. In the following years, Tito was able to create 
a consensual system of interrepublic debate and compromise, with 
constitutional amendments as required. That process culminated 
in the 1974 Constitution, which ratified and adjusted preceding 
changes and attempted to construct a system that would survive 
Tito's passing. 

The 1974 Constitution, which remained in effect through 1990, 
only partially reversed the extreme decentralization of the early 
1970s. With 406 original articles, it was one of the longest consti- 
tutions in the world. It added elaborate language protecting the 
socialist self-management system from state interference and ex 
panding representation of republics and provinces in all electoral 
and policy forums. The Constitution called the restructured Fed- 
eral Assembly the highest expression of the self-management sys- 
tem (see Government Structure, this ch.). Accordingly, it prescribed 
a complex electoral procedure for that body, beginning with the 
local labor and political organizations (see fig. 12). Those bodies 
were to elect commune-level assemblies, which then would elect 
assemblies at province and republic level; finally, the latter groups 
would elect the members of the two equal components of the Fed- 
eral Assembly, the Federal Chamber and the Chamber of Repub- 
lics and Provinces. Like its predecessor, the 1974 Constitution tried 
to refine the balance between economic and ethnic diversity on the 
one hand and the communist ideal of social unity on the other. 

The new Constitution also reduced the State Presidency from 
twenty-three to nine members, with equal representation for each 
republic and province and an ex-officio position for the president 
of the LCY. The party tried to reactivate its role in guiding na- 
tional policy through automatic inclusion of the party chief in the 
State Presidency. That practice was discontinued in 1988, when 
the political climate called for further separation of party and state 
functions. This reduced the State Presidency to eight members. 
The 1974 Constitution also expanded protection of individual rights 
and court procedures, with the all-purpose caveat that no citizen 
could use those freedoms to disrupt the prescribed social system. 
Finally, Kosovo and Vojvodina, the two constituent provinces of 
Serbia, received substantially increased autonomy, including de 
facto veto power in the Serbian parliament. This change became 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 















































Source: Based on information from Jovan Djordjevic' (ed.), Druitvmo-politUki sistem, SFRJ, 
Belgrade, 1975, 462. 

Figure 12. The Delegate System of Elections, 1990 

a turbulent issue of interrepublic debate in post- Tito Yugoslavia 
(see Regional Political Issues, this ch.). 

In practice, despite nominal dispersal of power, throughout the 
1970s the power of the LCY rested entirely on the personal leader- 
ship of Tito and his chief theoretician Kardelj. In 1974 Tito was 
elected president for life of the LCY, and the new Constitution 
gave him increased powers as state president. The new provision 
strengthened the legitimacy of the Yugoslav regime as defender 
of Marxism-Leninism. 

After personally intervening in the Croatian crisis in 197 1 , Tito 
gradually withdrew from the domestic decision-making process. 
He continued making inspirational speeches to party cadres and 
appointing officials of the party Presidium, but by 1976 he no longer 


Government and Politics 

presided over meetings of the Presidium or the State Presidency. 
In the last four years of his life, Tito's contact with day-to-day 
government operations decreased, and he no longer used his im- 
mense prestige to break policy deadlocks. 

In 1977 Kardelj attempted to lay the ideological groundwork for 
a diversified post-Tito political system. In his The Directions of De- 
velopment of the Political System of Self-Management, Kardelj admitted 
that pluralism was an inevitable fact of Yugoslav political life, but 
he insisted that this pluralism had nothing in common with the 
pluralism of the bourgeois democracies of the West. In Yugosla- 
via, he said, conflicting interests could be accommodated within 
the scope of the LCY. Kardelj correcdy identified one of the stron- 
gest forces of pluralism as the principle of self-management of eco- 
nomic and political organizations, which was greatly expanded in 
the 1974 Constitution. The trend continued in 1976, when the Law 
on Associated Labor prescribed the basic organizations of associated 
labor (BOALs) and self-management agreements of enterprises with 
the government. That law and the Constitution not only provided 
new building blocks for the Yugoslav economy but also codified 
political decentralization by removing centralized control and 
stimulating the growth of nonparty interest groups (see Adjustments 
in the 1970s, ch. 3). "All- Yugoslav" interests, already endangered 
by regional differences, suffered further fragmentation with the po- 
litical reforms of the mid-1970s. Individual communists, theoreti- 
cally given the role of integrating society for the common good of 
the working class, succumbed to divided loyalties and weak cen- 
tral leadership. 

In 1979 the Presidium, chief executive body of the LCY, began 
annual rotation of its chairmanship. After Tito died, his power to 
name Presidium members devolved to a special Presidium commis- 
sion that included regional party leaders. This additional step toward 
party decentralization further revealed the unique stature of the for- 
mer leader. Rotation of the Presidium chairmanship continued 
through the 1980s on a regular schedule, following the "nationality 
key" that divided the position equally among the eight federal juris- 
dictions; the rotation was called "the most elaborate quota system 
in the world." Although he devised the rotation system to prevent 
party domination by one individual, Tito placed great importance 
on a strong central party surviving him. By 1980, however, the cen- 
trifugal political forces gradually building in the previous fifteen 
years had already eroded the single party structure. And the ex- 
ample Tito set in 1948 by abandoning a monolithic world com- 
munist movement spoke more loudly for pragmatic diversification 
than any of his pleas thirty years later for national party unity. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

The Early Post-Tito Years 

As expected, Tito's death began a new era in Yugoslav politics, 
but many of the trends of the 1970s continued. Milka Planinc of 
Croatia was elected prime minister in 1982, amid pledges from all 
quarters to continue Tito's policies. Much rhetoric proclaimed the 
need for drastic reform, but formidable bureaucratic inertia always 
blunted the impetus for change. The divisive issues that Tito had held 
in check were even more pronounced after his death, and the thor- 
oughly divided power structure that succeeded him could manage on- 
ly superficially the major problems that escalated through the decade. 

Eight amendments were added to the Constitution in 1981. Their 
main purpose was to consolidate the elements of the rotational 
government that had been developed at various times in preceding 
years. Significandy, for the first time in a Yugoslav constitution, 
the term "collective body" was now used in reference to leadership 
policy. One 1981 amendment eliminated Tito's office of Yugoslav 
president for life, the functions oi which devolved to the nine-member 
rotating State Presidency. 

The Twelfth Party Congress of 1982, the first without Tito, was ex- 
pected to lay new political ground and provide strong direction. But 
all progress was blocked by the familiar regional stalemate between 
the centralizers and the decentralizers within the party. With no 
strong figure to act as ultimate arbiter, the Twelfth Party Congress 
began a new stage of strident, fruitless debate in the LCY. Significant- 
ly, the centralizers now based their position not on the Leninist 
idea of the party as national vanguard but on the pragmatic argu- 
ment that the country would collapse economically without strong 
central leadership. Throughout the 1980s, Serbia was the foremost 
exponent of stronger federal government, while Slovenia and Croatia 
were the foremost exponents of regional autonomy. With some varia- 
tion, the same division denned national debate on many other issues. 

Reform in the 1980s 

In 1982 the new Yugoslav government was faced with a serious 
economic crisis that included rising unemployment, rising prices, 
and national debt. In 1983 the national sense of crisis was strong 
enough that the Federal Assembly passed austerity measures that 
temporarily curbed spending and controlled inflation (see Managing 
the Crisis of the 1980s, ch. 3). In 1983 the Long-Term Economic 
Stabilization Program (also known as the Krajgher Commission 
Report) was issued, after two years of debate, as the official blueprint 
for economic reform. 

The Krajgher Commission Report was evidence that even in 


Federal Assembly (Skupstina) building, Belgrade 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

1983 most Yugoslav politicians agreed in theory that development 
of a market economy was necessary to restimulate growth through- 
out the country. But in practice this would have meant a drastic 
reduction in the policy-making role of the LCY, hence a total repu- 
diation of the Tito legacy. Free enterprise also would mean that 
government agencies at all levels would lose their control of eco- 
nomic affairs. For these reasons, market reform met strong institu- 
tional resistance. The alternative reform, a return to Stalinist central 
planning, had few Yugoslav advocates in the mid-1980s and was 
totally discredited by the fall of central planning governments across 
Eastern Europe in the late 1980s. 

While the government debated reform, the self-management sys- 
tem further dispersed control over economic and financial resources 
vital to the national economy. In the 1960s and 1970s, individual 
enterprises had formed alliances with local party machines, pro- 
tecting uneconomical industries by giving them disproportionate 
influence on policy making and eroding regional support for price 
and wage controls. Many of the short-term austerity measures of 
1983 were relaxed by the national government even before their 
expiration dates. The national political system then drifted into in- 
action, ignoring the need for fundamental economic reform that 
had been obvious since 1980. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

The Thirteenth Party Congress briefly rekindled activism in 1986 
by restating the conclusions of the Long-Term Economic Stabili- 
zation Program and by officially recognizing serious economic 
defects such as insufficient support for the relatively profitable pri- 
vate enterprise sector and unwise investment of foreign capital. The 
next years produced many official lists of resolutions and targets, 
all politically unpopular and aimed at imposing short-term austerity 
in order to effect long-term economic reform. Beginning in 1987, 
austerity wage freezes and plant closings were met by industrial 
strikes of increasing magnitude, and for the next two years govern- 
ment policy wavered between hard-line measures (such as threats 
to use the army to break strikes) and accommodation (such as 
replacement of unpopular party and state figures in Montenegro). 
Strikes contributed to the 1988 fall of Prime Minister Branko Miku- 
lic, and they threatened to topple Mikulic's successor, Ante Mar- 
kovic, in 1989. 

The 1980s also brought many proposals for political reform, some 
of which were drastic. Suggestions included abolishing all politi- 
cal parties and running the system through citizens' associations; 
holding multi-candidate elections within the party; and introduc- 
ing a full multi-party system that would have meant electoral com- 
petition for the LCY. Once the pattern of intraparty debate was 
established at the 1982 Twelfth Party Congress of the LCY, vari- 
ations on all these themes appeared in official and unofficial fo- 
rums throughout the decade. After the Twelfth Party Congress, 
Najdan PasSic, a Serbian member of the LCY Central Committee, 
wrote a letter summarizing Serbian reform demands to alleviate 
the stalemate of Tito's government by consensus. The working 
group that grew from these demands took three years to produce 
its "Critical Analysis of the Functioning of the Political System 
of Socialist Self-Management," to which over 200 individuals con- 
tributed. The final report was so nebulous that both sides of the 
centralization issue claimed it as a victory. In 1984 the League of 
Communists of Serbia officially demanded repeal of autonomy in 
Kosovo and Vojvodina, plus reinforced federal government pow- 
er, liberalized control of economic enterprises, and democratiza- 
tion of the electoral system. The main result of this proposal was 
angry dissent in Kosovo and Vojvodina. In 1986 a lengthy 
memorandum by the Serbian Academy of Sciences attacked the 
1974 Constitution for blocking Serbian control of its provinces and 
criticized the party for failure to implement the program of the Kraj- 
gher Commission. The memorandum brought polemical responses 
from Kosovo and Vojvodina, as well as official censure of the acade- 
my by the party. 


Government and Politics 

At the Thirteenth Party Congress in 1986, advocates of strong 
central government gained wide support among all delegations ex- 
cept the Slovenian. There was general agreement that decentrali- 
zation had led to a dangerous proliferation of narrow, technocratic 
local interests, beyond the control of the LCY. Centralist forces 
won a victory when a new party statute transferred election of party 
Central Committee members from the republic parties to the LCY 
party congress and gave the national party the right to curb devia- 
tion by republican parties. In a massive transition of party power, 
only 38 of the party's 165-member Central Committee were reelec- 
ted at the Thirteenth Party Congress. 

The Thirteenth Party Congress also formed a commission to write 
a new series of constitutional amendments. Amendments proposed 
in 1987 sought to reduce the obstructive influence of decentralized 
government. The federal planning system was to be strengthened, 
and the relations of the republics and provinces to the federal 
government were to be redefined. Several aspects of economic re- 
form were addressed, but the main impetus behind the amend- 
ments was the Serbian drive to regain control over its provinces. 
After twenty-two months of heated regional debate, the amend- 
ments were approved by the Federal Assembly. Because of their 
broad application in economics, government, and the party, they 
were expected to form the basis for yet another completely new 
Yugoslav constitution in the early 1990s. The idea of a new con- 
stitution was supported most strongly by the Serbs, who saw it as 
a vehicle to officially ratify their control of Kosovo and Vojvodina 
and achieve at least parity with the other republics (which had no 
such problematic semiautonomous provinces). An estimated 6 mil- 
lion people took part in public debate on what finally emerged in 
1988 as thirty-nine amendments. 

The Leadership Crisis 

A political crisis occurred in late 1988 when Prime Minister 
Mikulic resigned under pressure. Mikulic, who had initiated several 
austerity programs to reduce rampant inflation, met general dis- 
approval when his programs produced no immediate results. He 
was also implicated in the Agrokomerc scandal of 1987, the most 
extensive instance of government and financial corruption in Yu- 
goslavia to that time. In accordance with the constitutional provi- 
sions for resignation, the Mikulic government remained in office 
until a new government, headed by Markovic, was selected in the 
spring of 1989. Markovic, who had gained a reputation as an ef- 
fective economic innovator and moderate politician in Croatia, drew 
heavy criticism for refusing to take drastic anti-inflation measures 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and for allowing both the economy and the Kosovo crisis to wors- 
en in his first year in office. 

Throughout the turbulent debates of the 1980s, the Yugoslav 
political system never produced a leader who commanded the 
respect of all factions. But by the turn of the decade, an end to 
the leadership crisis appeared possible. Markovic, who became 
prime minister in 1989, clearly belonged to a generation of tech- 
nocrats intermediate between the Tito generation and the young- 
est politicians in the country, and some of his economic policies 
received strong public criticism. But Markovic made bold moves 
toward a Yugoslav market economy in 1990. He received broad 
public support when he declared that his government would func- 
tion independently of LCY influence and would be ready for 
multiparty elections after the LCY split in 1990. More important 
for the long term, a new generation of leaders began to fill nation- 
al positions at the end of the 1980s, leaving few figures from Ti- 
to's World War II Partisan circle in power. New faces included 
1989 State President Janez DrnovSek of Slovenia and Vasil Tupur- 
kovski, a Macedonian member of the FEC. Both in their thirties 
when elected but with positive national reputations, DrnovSek and 
Tupurkovski called consistently for pragmatic, drastic reform. 

Government Structure 

The Yugoslav Constitution of 1974 prescribed no division of pow- 
ers among the bodies of the federal or republic governments. In 
practice, however, these entities resembled those of a parliamen- 
tary democracy in their division of responsibility. The basic struc- 
ture and relationships of government institutions remained the same 
from 1974 through 1990. 

Federal Assembly 

The 1974 Constitution divided the Federal Assembly (SkupStina) 
into two chambers, the Federal Chamber and the Chamber of 
Republics and Provinces (see fig. 13). The former contained thirty 
representatives from each republic and twenty from each province. 
Representatives were chosen from among delegates elected by or- 
ganizations such as communes and institutions at the lowest level 
of the system, giving the chamber elements of a grass-roots constit- 
uency. Members of assemblies below the federal level were not eligi- 
ble for the Federal Chamber. Voting in the Federal Chamber was 
by simple majority, and the chamber considered all issues where 
federal authority had an impact on any local organization. Although 
originally intended to represent individuals and local organizations, 


Government and Politics 

delegates tended to vote according to instructions from their respec- 
tive regional governments. 

The Chamber of Republics and Provinces was elected by the 
assemblies of the republics and provinces. It included twelve 
delegates from each republic and eight from each province. Vot- 
ing was by delegation, and unanimity was required on all inter- 
regional questions. This requirement meant that all eight political 
jurisdictions had veto power in any vote. All interregional issues 
with federal jurisdiction were considered in this chamber. Proposals 
were forwarded to the assemblies of the republics involved for for- 
mation of the regional position that would determine the bloc vote 
of the national delegation. 

Federal Executive Council 

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) was responsible for every- 
day bureaucratic operation of the government (see fig. 14). Using 
recommendations from the LCY and its own committees, the FEC 
was the primary sponsor of proposals for deliberation by the Fed- 
eral Assembly. The FEC consisted of a prime minister and two 
deputy prime ministers, who were nominated by the State Presiden- 
cy and ratified by the Federal Assembly, and the heads, or secre- 
taries, of the twelve major federal bureaucracies (the secretariats 
for agriculture, development, doriestic trade, finance, foreign af- 
fairs, foreign economic relations, industry and energy, internal af- 
fairs, labor, legal and administrative affairs, national defense, and 
transportation and communication). The secretaries were select- 
ed by the prime minister and approved by the Federal Assembly. 
Four ministers without portfolio were added from republics un- 
derrepresented in the other fifteen positions. 

The nineteen-member FEC outlined in the 1974 Constitution 
was reduced from the previous number of twenty-nine; the feder- 
al Secretariat for Finance was added in 1988, the secretariats for 
development and domestic trade in 1989. Although Tito's rota- 
tion principle was not observed in determining the nationality of 
the prime minister or the federal secretaries, a rough balance was 

FEC members formed a variety of committees for resolution of 
interregional issues preparatory to making recommendations to the 
Federal Assembly. Five standing committees, one for each of the 
most troublesome federal issues, included members from both the 
FEC and the republic executive councils. These committees de- 
bated practical aspects of all national problems, making the FEC 
the most important national center of political debate, compromise, 
and influence. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 



PER $0,000 PEOPLE 













170) I 































Source: Based on information from Josip Sink, Ustaono urtdjmje, SFRJ, Zagreb, 1976, 329-32. 

Figure 13. Evolution of the Federal Parliament as of 1990 

Legislation was formulated in the FEC — a process that could 
take a year or more — then sent to the appropriate chamber of the 
Federal Assembly for debate. In the 1970s, the FEC was second 
only to Tito himself in producing compromises on controversial 
issues among opposing republics and second only to the party as 
a decision-making body. By definition, it controlled all federal 
bureaucracies and had exclusive access to expert information needed 
for policy making. The FEC also could determine the scheduling 
of debate on legislation and policy. After Tito's death, however, 
regions defended their interests more stubbornly, and party leader- 
ship split along regional lines. In negotiations involving party leaders 
with regional agendas, the FEC increasingly relied on constitution- 
ally prescribed temporary measures, which could not be blocked 
by dissenting delegations. Such measures remained in effect pending 


Government and Politics 

a unanimous resolution, and on many issues they were the only 
valid legislation for long periods of time. The FEC's failing bar- 
gaining power during the 1980s was exemplified by its inability 
to formulate the practical terms of the Long-Term Program of Eco- 
nomic Stabilization. 

FEC members also sat on advisory councils that considered in- 
terregional organizational issues. All major social and political or- 
ganizations, including the LCY, were represented in the councils. 
Although not prescribed in the Constitution, the councils played 
a major role in federal policy making after 1973. 

State Presidency 

Also represented in the federal councils was the third major or- 
gan of the Yugoslav national government, the collective State 
Presidency. Formed by Tito in 1970 to provide all- Yugoslav negoti- 
ation of interregional conflicts, the State Presidency became the 
symbolic replacement for Tito's position as head of state. By 1989 
it had evolved from the original twenty-three-member group to an 
eight-member group, one member of which was elected from each 
republic and province. A ninth, ex-officio post was held by the presi- 
dent of the LCY Central Committee until late 1988, when the po- 
sition was abolished to reduce party interference in state institutions. 
Most republics and provinces elected their representatives to the 
state Presidency in their assemblies, but in 1989 Bosnia and Her- 
cegovina, Montenegro, and Slovenia held direct popular elections 
for this post. The position of president rotated yearly, to provide 
even distribution among the republican and provincial represen- 
tatives. Beginning with the 1989 president, Janez DrnovSek of 
Slovenia, the "presidency of the Presidency" was to rotate among 
the republics and provinces in the following order: Serbia, Croa- 
tia, Montenegro, Vojvodina, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Bosnia and 
Hercegovina, through 1997. 

The 1974 Constitution named the State Presidency as "supreme 
body in charge of administration and command of the armed 
forces," as well as the main administrator of foreign policy and 
adviser on domestic policy. The State Presidency controlled its con- 
stitutionally prescribed domains through working bodies known 
as councils of the presidency. Among these were councils for for- 
eign policy, national defense, state security, and protection of the 
constitutional order. Councils were appointed by the FEC. In prac- 
tice, the State Presidency deliberated informally, consulting regu- 
larly with representatives of other government bodies and 
developing positions by consensus rather than by the majority vote 
prescribed in the Constitution. It also met regularly with the LCY 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Government and Politics 

Presidium and regional presidencies. Because its members had no 
bureaucratic responsibility and because of the prestige left to the 
institution by Tito, the State Presidency was an important bar- 
gaining center for purely political issues that could not be resolved 
in the Federal Assembly or the FEC. It also initiated all temporary 
measures passed by the FEC. But the State Presidency had no power 
to impose compromise; this was not an important weakness when 
Tito filled the position, but his successors lacked his personal in- 

Court System 

Yugoslavia had two national court systems, one for resolution 
of civil and criminal cases, the other to judge the conformity of 
national law with the Constitution and the conformity of laws passed 
by republics and provinces with national law. In 1990 the federal 
Constitutional Court found recent amendments to the constitutions 
of all the republics except Montenegro to be at variance with the 
federal Constitution, The court did not have the authority, however, 
to take action against such infractions. Its judgments were passed 
to the Federal Assembly for action. The federal Constitutional Court 
also resolved disputes of authority between regional bodies or be- 
tween a regional body and the national government, but it did not 
act as an appeals court for the regional level. The republics and 
provinces also had constitutional courts, which dealt with constitu- 
tional questions on their level. For national uniformity, the mem- 
bers of the regional constitutional courts held regular consultations 
on procedures and constitutional interpretations. 

The regular court system consisted of the federal, republican, 
and provincial supreme courts and of local (commune) courts, each 
resolving civil and criminal cases involving laws at their level of 
government. Local regular courts included untrained citizens elected 
by their communes, as well as professional jurists. This provision 
partially fulfilled the function of trial by jury, which did not exist 
in Yugoslavia. The Yugoslav system also had no habeas corpus 
law. Only professional judges served on the regular courts of the 
republics and the federal Supreme Court. The system also includ- 
ed local- to federal-level self-management courts (courts of associated 
labor), which heard only cases involving acts of the self-management 
organizations not involving government law. The military courts 
completed the Yugoslav justice system (see Courts, Detention, and 
Punishment, ch. 5). 

Each republic and province had its own law code, separate from 
the federal criminal code. By federal law, political crimes were 
first tried at district level; then cases could be appealed at the 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

republic and federal levels of the regular court system. The feder- 
al Supreme Court was the final court of appeal for lower courts 
of all types. The chief civil law enforcement officer was the public 
prosecutor, elected by the Federal Assembly. The republics and 
provinces had corresponding officers, similarly elected and under 
the direction of the federal prosecutor. 

Local Government and the Communes 

Government structure at the republic level was essentially the 
same as that at the federal level. This included multi-member 
presidencies headed by a single member designated as president 
of the republic. In multiethnic republics such as Bosnia and Her- 
cegovina, members of the presidency were allotted and selected by 
ethnic group. Through 1990 each republic had a three-chamber 
assembly, including the chambers of associated labor and communes 
and the sociopolitical chamber. Republic executive councils included 
a full complement of ministries, including foreign ministries. The 
governments of the "autonomous" provinces Kosovo and Vojvo- 
dina had the same structure; in the years of true autonomy, 
1974-88, the provinces' delegates to the federal State Presidency 
and the federal Chamber of Republics and Provinces took indepen- 
dent positions on some issues. Beginning in 1988, however, Ser- 
bia tightened control over the provinces by purging the Kosovo 
and Vojvodina leagues of communists (hence the government 
leadership) and inserting pro-Serbian individuals. Amendment of 
the constitution of Serbia, to which the provinces were bound, over- 
rode the autonomy provisions of the 1974 federal Constitution. 

Local government in Yugoslavia was based on the unique insti- 
tution of the commune, officially defined as "a self-managing socio- 
political community based on the power of and self-management 
by working-class and all working people." In 1988 Yugoslav local 
government consisted of about 500 communes. Beginning in the 
1950s, the communes held all political authority not specifically 
delegated to government at the federal or republic level; they were 
the source of Yugoslavia's claim that, unlike the centralized Soviet 
system, Yugoslav socialism truly gave power to the workers. Be- 
cause they generated pockets of political power controlled by local 
party officials, the communes also contributed to the fractious, un- 
focused nature of political power throughout the country after the 
death of Tito. The district, next-highest political level above the 
commune, controlled law enforcement and elections, but functions 
such as economic planning, management of utilities, and supervi- 
sion of economic enterprises were the responsibility of the com- 
mune. Workers' councils of industrial enterprises were obliged to 


Government and Politics 

submit financial records to the communes to justify the setting of 
worker wages (see The Economic Management Mechanism, ch. 3). 

The commune was also the lowest level in the complex delegate 
system that ultimately elected members of the Federal Assembly. 
Workers, sociopolitical organizations, and local communities elected 
the members of three-chamber commune assemblies, which in turn 
elected delegates to republic and provincial assemblies and delegates 
to the Federal Chamber of the Federal Assembly. Delegates to the 
republic and provincial assemblies elected members of the Chamber 
of Republics and Provinces of the Federal Assembly, but they had 
no voice in choosing the Federal Chamber. In practice, individual 
voters at the commune level chose only from closed lists of delegate 
candidates, with little regard for capacity to represent a constituency. 
Although liberalization of the electoral system was frequently dis- 
cussed, no open nomination process had emerged by 1990. Both 
commune and republic assemblies had three chambers, each repre- 
senting a sector of society (associated labor, local communities, and 
sociopolitical organizations). Because those categories overlapped, 
some citizens were represented by more than one delegate. 

Behind the principle of socialist self-management, prescribed at 
length in the 1974 Constitution, was the concept that self-managing 
citizens' organizations would assume complete governmental control 
and the state would disappear entirely at some point. In practice, 
however, grass-roots political power shrank in the 1980s, especial- 
ly as it applied to economic policy. Exercise of this power was 
blocked by an intermediate layer of political managers, whose selec- 
tion remained an LCY prerogative at the republic and provincial 
levels. Given this selection policy, the regional Yugoslav system 
mainly chose loyal party operatives over competent managers when 
such a choice was necessary. Given the autonomy of all state agen- 
cies below the federal level in Yugoslavia, these political appoin- 
tees were able to block national reform programs that threatened 
their elite positions. Yugoslavia had renounced both Stalinist cen- 
tralized planning and (to a lesser extent) the practice of limiting 
the best party jobs to a privileged elite, known in communist soci- 
eties as the nomenklatura. Nevertheless, in Yugoslavia a number of 
inflexible smaller systems deprived industrial and agricultural work- 
ers of the decision-making powers guaranteed them by the Con- 
stitution to control their own economic destiny. Decision-making 
bodies were in no way answerable to the workers for their poli- 
cies. Neither of the chambers of the Federal Assembly, election 
of whose delegates nominally began at the grass-roots level, 
represented workers or their organizations as separate interest 
groups independent of the overall political position of their region. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Nongovernmental Political Institutions 

Beginning in 1945, the institutions of the Yugoslav government 
were overshadowed by the dominating policy input of the single 
ruling communist party and by a number of party-controlled organi- 
zations designed to maintain control of various sectors of society. 
At the end of the first post-Tito decade, however, this condition 
changed in two ways. First, major party-controlled organizations 
such as unions and youth groups took independent positions, and 
some became rival parties to the LCY. Those that remained closest 
to the LCY lost membership and influence. Second, the 1990 split 
of the LCY left that organization without even nominal policy- 
making control for the first time since 1945. These developments 
threatened to complete the separation of state from party that had 
begun in 1948. 

League of Communists of Yugoslavia 

Through the end of the 1980s, Yugoslavia remained a one-party 
state. All government officials at national and republic levels, and 
a very high percentage of local officials, were chosen from among 
the 2 million members of the League of Communists of Yugosla- 
via (LCY). The 1974 Constitution described the LCY as "the prime 
mover and exponent of political activity," using its "guiding ideo- 
logical and political action" to foster self-management, the socialist 
revolution, and "social and democratic consciousness." In the 
process of government reforms in the 1960s and 1970s, the 
dominance of the LCY began to erode, especially in the area of 
economic policy. Through the 1980s, however, the LCY remained 
nominally the primary nongovernmental political institution, with 
continued heavy influence on matters of political policy at all lev- 
els of the federal state. In practical input to policy decisions, the 
power of the LCY leadership overlapped and often blended with 
that of the collective State Presidency and the FEC . But party in- 
fluence and respect in Yugoslav society at large lagged noticeably, 
and alternative political organizations proliferated. By 1990 the con- 
stitutional guarantee for the existence of LCY-sponsored organi- 
zations was being used to justify the formation of noncommunist 
parties without further amendment of the Constitution. 

LCY membership decreased slightly in the 1980s. The last in- 
crease was recorded in 1982, and in 1988 membership fell below 
2 million for the first time since 1979. The death of Tito deprived 
the party of its only unifying element, and after 1980 the party 
suffered from the same fragmentation and diffusion of power as 
government institutions. 


Government and Politics 

Founded in 1919, the party came to power in 1945 and followed 
the organizational pattern of the communist party in the Soviet 
Union until the Sixth Party Congress (1952). The first major party 
decentralization occurred at that time, beginning a long, uneven 
process of reducing direct party authority in society. The Sixth Party 
Congress also changed the name of the party from the Communist 
Party of Yugoslavia (CPY) to the League of Communists of Yu- 
goslavia (LCY), to differentiate it from the other East European 
communist parties. 

Under Tito, a series of pragmatic adjustments were made after 
1952 to counteract the decentralization trend, when more control 
was needed in the central party organ. The first major event in 
that series was the 1954 condemnation of Milovan Djilas, architect 
of the 1952 reforms. Beginning in 1963, major structural changes 
affected the national role of the LCY. Early changes were the in- 
troduction of direct channels of influence for self-management 
groups into policy making (1963) and the mandated separation of 
top party and state positions (1966). Until the removal of Rankovic 
in 1966, a strong conservative element sought to restore the direct, 
central role that the party had gradually lost after the split with 
the Soviet Union. Beginning in 1966, however, the party assumed 
an atmosphere of open, regionally based disagreement that inten- 
sified for the next twenty-five years. In 1969 the failure of the pres- 
tigious Executive Bureau of the party Presidium to act as a truly 
national mediator within the party signaled growing fragmenta- 
tion in the LCY structure (see Political Evolution after 1945, this 
ch.). The open rebellion of the Croatian party between 1969 and 
1971 had negative repercussions for the LCY, despite Tito's deci- 
sive purge. Croatia remained tranquil in the 1970s, but the Serbi- 
an and Slovenian parties criticized the national organization 
periodically. The Serbs were especially restive after passage of the 
1974 Constitution. In 1976 Najdan PaSic, in the name of the Ser- 
bian central committee, presented a document known as the Blue 
Book to the LCY leadership. That document was a list of damages 
suffered by the Serbs because of inequities in the Constitution. Tito 
suppressed the Blue Book, but six years later Pa§ic attracted more 
attention by suggesting that a commission study problems of govern- 
ment function. 

Efforts to streamline Yugoslavia's economic and political sys- 
tems always involved making changes in the LCY. All factions un- 
derstood that no meaningful change was possible in those areas 
without cutting through the cumbersome lines of power held by 
party elites at all levels. All the major reform efforts of the 1980s 
(the PaSic letter of 1982, an open call for reform proposals in 1985, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and the national working group report and Serbian Academy of 
Sciences document of 1986) listed party reform as the starting point 
for political progress (see Reform in the 1980s, this ch.). Neverthe- 
less, in 1990 the LCY was still organized in substantially the same 
way as it had been at the time of Tito's death. By that time, the 
LCY was commonly called "not one party, but eight," a descrip- 
tion that accurately reflected its fragmentation. 

In theory, the national party congress was the highest authority 
of the LCY; it was mandated to meet at least every five years. Ac- 
cordingly, the Twelfth Party Congress met in 1982, the Thirteenth 
Party Congress in 1986, the Fourteenth Party Congress in 1990. 
The main goal of those congresses was reconciliation of regional 
differences on reform that would restore the party's leading role 
in shaping national policy. The 1982 and 1986 congresses each be- 
gan with hopeful rhetoric and dissolved into renewed regional 
squabbles. The 1990 congress was the first since 1945 to be labeled 
"extraordinary" (meaning "emergency"). It was widely viewed 
as the party's "last chance" for constructive action to improve its 
sagging national image. 

A commission on party statute reform met six months prior to 
the Fourteenth Party Congress to develop reform proposals for dis- 
cussion at the congress. This commission reaffirmed the Leninist 
principle of democratic centralism — meaning that diverse views 
were to be heard but that the will of the majority would determine 
policy. The commission also recommended streamlining the party 
hierarchy for greater accountability. But the vague language of the 
commission report addressed none of the deep and controversial 
statutory changes universally acknowledged as necessary. The 
stimulus for change would thus have to come from a platform adopt- 
ed by the congress itself. By party law, such a platform was re- 
quired to precede statutory changes. In fact, prior to the opening 
of the congress, no formal proposal for party transformation had 
ever been made. 

The Fourteenth Party Congress included 1,688 delegates, of 
which 994 were elected by local commune party conferences (1 
delegate per 2,000 party members). Each of the six republic party 
organizations then added 60 delegates. The two provincial party 
organizations added 40 each, and the Yugoslav People's Army 
(YPA) added another 30. Other party organizations sent a total 
of 204 delegates. Regional representation was divided as follows: 
Serbia had 360 delegates; Bosnia and Hercegovina, 278; Croatia, 
240; Macedonia, 166; Vojvodina, 157; Slovenia, 139; Montenegro, 
123; and Kosovo, 112. 


Government and Politics 

Doctrinal reform was the central task of the Fourteenth Party 
Congress. The congress voted to relinquish the LCY's monopoly 
of political power and allow multiparty elections in response to simi- 
lar moves in neighboring communist countries. But the meeting 
was cut short when the Slovenian delegation departed in protest 
of the defeat of its proposal to restructure the LCY as a league of 
republican organizations freely associated under the national party. 
The departure of the League of Communists of Slovenia left the 
national organization weakened and uncertain, especially because 
national television had revealed acrimonious conflicts in what was 
supposedly the strongest unifying political force in the country. In 
the months following the congress, the status of the party remained 
unknown, as Serbian and other members attempted to reconvene 
the congress and complete the much-needed new party platform. 
Both the passage of electoral reforms and the interruption of the 
congress by the Slovenes dampened Serbian ambitions for using 
the party to control national politics. 

The procedures and structure of the LCY remained largely un- 
changed during the 1980s. The party was directed between con- 
gresses by the Presidium, the twenty-three member steering body 
for the Central Committee. The Presidium oversaw a variety of 
commissions and organizations and implemented party policy. 
Specific Presidium members directed party activities in ideology, 
organizational development, socioeconomic relations, political 
propaganda, and international relations. Nationalities were appor- 
tioned in the Presidium according to republic and province 'three 
members per republic, two per province, one representing the YPA, 
plus the president, who was elected by the party Central Commit- 
tee). Of the Presidium membership, fourteen were full members; 
the others were ex officio members (one from the YPA, plus the 
presidents of the party presidiums of each republic and province). 
Ex officio members could not be direcdy removed. Because the Pre- 
sidium thus provided the YPA a direct role in decision making, 
that organization strongly opposed legalization of other political par- 
ties that would not provide it such input (see The Military and 
the Party, ch. 5). Tito's last major adjustment to the party system 
had established rotation of major party leadership positions, which 
after 1979 were assumed by a representative of a different region 
every one or two years. When Tito died, the Presidium seemed 
to be increasing its influence on national policy making. That trend 
ended in 1980, however, when the position of party president was 
abolished in favor of collective leadership in the Presidium. 

In the late 1980s, the Central Committee comprised 165 mem- 
bers. Those individuals were nominated by the central committees 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

of the republics and provinces. The national Central Committee 
was called into plenary session at irregular intervals to discuss ur- 
gent policy questions. In less than one year in 1988-89, ten such 
sessions — some held consecutively — were called to discuss party re- 
form. Both the Presidium and the Central Committee were tar- 
geted in reform agendas; reform efforts removed five Presidium 
members in 1989, and an 1989 LCY commission proposed reduc- 
ing the size of the Central Committee to 129 members. 

Membership policy for the LCY differed markedly from that for 
other communist parties. Until the reforms of 1952, Yugoslavia 
followed the Soviet model. Recommendations for party member- 
ship were required from two party members; then a candidate for 
membership was placed on probation for eighteen months. Both 
those requirements were dropped in 1952; after that time, nomi- 
nations also were accepted from nonparty Yugoslavs in good stand- 
ing. During the 1970s, party membership nearly doubled, despite 
the large-scale expulsions of the Tito era (170,000 left the party 
forcibly or voluntarily between 1972 and 1979). Membership 
reached 2 million in 1980. From 1983 until 1988, however, the 
number decreased slightly every year, although massive expulsions 
did not recur after the purge of the Kosovo party following the 1981 
riots. About 5 percent of party members left voluntarily in the 1980s, 
and the percentage of worker and peasant members declined. In 
1987 workers constituted only 30 percent of the total membership 
and 8 percent of the Central Committee, while peasants made up 
only 3.5 percent of total party membership. Increasing party elitism 
was indicated by the stable percentage of the intelligentsia, who 
depended on party membership for upward professional mobility. 
In the mid-1980s, some 95 percent of top managers and 77.6 per- 
cent of professionals in Yugoslavia were party members. In 1980 
only 25 percent of party membership was younger than twenty- 
seven, including only 1 in 200 students. 

Authoritative studies and surveys in the 1980s showed that most 
Yugoslavs, whether party members or nonmembers, viewed the 
LCY as a practical avenue to success, not as a leading force in the 
ideology or ethics of the nation. Many LCY members did not par- 
ticipate in political activities, and power positions remained in the 
same hands for long periods of time. A considerable number of 
Central Committee members served more than one term, some 
as many as seven. 

Party organization at the republic and province level was iden- 
tical to that of the national party. A group of executive secretaries 
of the national Presidium served as the liaison between the national 
party and the next level in the hierarchy. In the 1980s, the republic 


Government and Politics 

and provincial parties were the most important arenas for formulat- 
ing and expressing the positions of their respective jurisdictions 
toward national political and economic issues. For example, the 
central committees of Slovenia and Serbia framed much of the po- 
litical polemics between the two republics. Slobodan Milosevic used 
the presidency of the Serbian presidium in the late 1980s as a plat- 
form to advocate Serbian nationalism and recentralization of party 
and state institutions. Approval by the Slovenian and Croatian cen- 
tral committees for multiparty local elections in 1990 signaled a 
major breakthrough toward a true multiparty system in those repub- 
lics (see Regional Political Issues, this ch.). And the purging of 
provincial party leaders in Vojvodina and Kosovo under pressure 
from the Serbian party in 1988 marked a turning point in Serbia's 
struggle to reassert control over its two provinces. 

Thus in 1990 the LCY was decentralized in exercising authori- 
ty but increasingly elitist in terms of who occupied positions of power 
in the party organizations. Party configuration was the most for- 
midable obstacle to reform of the national political system, but struc- 
tural change could come only from a centralized authority whose 
mere existence would threaten regional elites. Even as actual LCY 
power waned, Tito's legacy of party policy-making dominance re- 
mained the theoretical, paralyzing basis of government operations. 

Socialist Alliance of Working People of Yugoslavia 

The Socialist Alliance of Working People of Yugoslavia (SAWPY), 
formerly the People's Front, was the largest and most influential 
mass organization in Yugoslavia from 1945 through 1990. In 1990 
its membership was 13 million, including most of the adult popu- 
lation of the country. The political purpose of this national organi- 
zation, sponsored by the LCY, was to involve as many people as 
possible in activities on the party agenda, without the restrictions 
and negative connotations of direct party control. SAWPY also was 
chartered as a national arbitration forum for competing cross- 
regional interests. Although party officials were forbidden to hold 
simultaneous office in SAWPY, the top echelon of the latter was 
dominated by established party members. The importance of SAWPY 
to the party leadership increased as the party's direct control over 
social and state institutions decreased. It was useful in mobilizing 
otherwise apathetic citizens during the Croatian crisis of 1971 and 
the Kosovo crisis of 1987. 

The Constitution stipulated a wide variety of social and politi- 
cal functions for SAWPY, including nomination of candidates for 
delegate at the commune level, suggesting solutions to national and 
local social issues to assembly delegates, and overseeing elections 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

and public policy implementation. Both individuals and interest 
groups held membership. The structure of SAWPY was very similar 
to that of the party, including a hierarchy that extended from na- 
tional to commune level. SAWPY organizations in the republics 
and provinces were simplified versions of the national structure. 

The national organization was run by a conference of delegates 
chosen by the regional SAWPY leadership. The conference presidium 
included members from the party, the armed forces, trade unions, 
the Youth League of Yugoslavia, and other national organizations. 
Like the LCY Central Committee, the SAWPY conference estab- 
lished departments to formulate policy recommendations in areas 
such as economics, education, and sociopolitical relations. Coor- 
dinating committees were also active in interregional consultation 
on policy and mass political action. 

In Slovenia, the Socialist Alliance of Working People became 
an umbrella organization for a number of nonparty organizations 
with political interests, beginning in 1988. On a lesser scale, simi- 
lar changes occurred in other republics. This development rekin- 
dled the idea that SAWPY might be divorced from LCY domination 
and reconstituted as a second political party at the national level. 
Pending such an event, SAWPY was regarded throughout the 1980s 
as a puppet of the party elite, particularly by virtue of its exclusive 
control over the nomination of assembly delegates at the commune 

Trade Unions 

The Confederation of Trade Unions of Yugoslavia also was a 
party-dominated mass organization. It had the constitutional man- 
date of protecting the rights of workers and preserving the self- 
management system. It also oversaw selection of delegates to the 
Federal Assembly from economic enterprises and of delegates to 
the management bodies of those enterprises. The structure of the 
confederation was the same as that of the party and SAWPY, but 
the ruling body, the Council of the Confederation, did not allot 
positions according to ethnic or regional quotas. Seats on the presidi- 
um of the council were held by the national heads of the Yugoslav 
trade unions and the presidents of regional trade union councils. 
Party influence in the trade unions remained very strong through 
the 1980s; virtually all officials were pa. ty members, and worker 
membership in the unions, although voluntary, was considered au- 
tomatic in many enterprises. 

In the Yugoslav self-managed enterprise system, there was 
no true adversary function for unions or their officials because 
there was no true distinction between employers and employees. 


Government and Politics 

Agreements were made between worker groups within and among 
enterprises, cutting across union organizational boundaries (see The 
Economic Management Mechanism, ch. 3). The function of the 
unions was to preserve party influence by selecting the members 
of the workers' councils, to ensure that the enterprise was run ac- 
cording to the self-management laws, and to protect the working 
environment. Until 1987 union officials also were expected to sup- 
press "work stoppages," but they offered little resistance to the 
increasing number of strikes between 1987 and 1990. 

According to a 1986 national poll, 71 percent of workers identi- 
fied themselves as either members or officers of a trade union, while 
25 percent denied membership. These figures differed considera- 
bly from official membership statistics, which claimed a 97 per- 
cent enrollment. Other poll results showed a lack of broad, active 
support of the unions, even among members; the majority of work- 
ers polled did not believe that the trade union system was a useful 
institution in representing their interests, and only a small percent- 
age of members took an active role in the organization. Neverthe- 
less, the presence of a genuine trade union structure controlled at 
the enterprise level was a significant departure from the enterprise 
politics of the "conventional" communist states. 

Youth League of Yugoslavia 

The Youth League of Yugoslavia was the training organization 
for future members of the LCY, SAWPY, and the trade unions. 
Patterned after the Soviet model of youth indoctrination organi- 
zations, the Yugoslav youth group suffered from divided leader- 
ship, poor support from the party, and dwindling membership in 
the 1980s. The very high youth unemployment rate of the late 1980s 
made the indoctrination of young socialists a difficult task under 
the best of conditions. The proportion of nonparticipating mem- 
bers doubled between 1981 and 1986. Slovenia, where only 5 per- 
cent of youth expressed a desire to become party members in 1986, 
had the lowest figure for the period. The youth league exerted lit- 
tle influence on state or party politics. However, in 1989 the Slove- 
nian branch of the organization announced plans for transformation 
into a new political party with mass support, in time for the 1990 
Slovenian parliamentary elections. 

Veterans' Association 

The Federation of Associations of Veterans of the National Liber- 
ation War (Savez udruzenja boraca Narodno-oslobodilackog rata — 
SUBNOR) was an aging, dwindling group of former World War 
II Partisans. The assemblies of local and republic governments 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

designated seats for SUBNOR representatives. Often used by Tito 
as a prestigious lever for centralizing party control, SUBNOR in 
the 1980s espoused the view that modern Yugoslavia had degener- 
ated since the early days of struggle and that new leadership was 
needed. Although by 1990 few figures of its generation and view- 
point remained in national politics, SUBNOR retained consider- 
able influence in the first post-Tito decade (see Government 
Organization for Defense, ch. 5). 

Regional Political Issues 

Throughout the postwar era, each of Yugoslavia's six republics 
and two provinces maintained its own political posture and agenda, 
many aspects of which had originated centuries before. Geogra- 
phy, natural resources, religion, nationality, economic policy, and 
traditional relations with other countries influenced the positions 
of republics and provinces. In 1987 Pedro Ramet, a scholar of Yugo- 
slav politics, summarized interrepublican political differences thus: 
"... liberal recentralizers are dominant in the Serbian Party, con- 
servative recentralizers in the Bosnian and Montenegrin Parties, 
liberal decentralizers in the Slovenian and Vojvodinan Parties, and 
conservative decentralizers in the Croatian, Macedonian, and 
Kosovan Parties." By 1990 a complex combination of differen- 
tiating factors again threatened to divide the federal structure of 
the Yugoslav state. 


Throughout the postwar period, Slovenia was by far the richest 
per capita, the most ethnically homogeneous, and the most open 
to political experimentation of the Yugoslav republics. In centu- 
ries of close contact with Austria, Italy, and France, it had absorbed 
much from Western political and economic thought (see The Slo- 
venes, ch. 1). Preservation of hard- won economic advantages was 
a primary consideration in Slovenia's political posture, especially 
after the 1974 Constitution prescribed new federal budgeting proce- 
dures. Slovenes had always objected to federal levies used to support 
underdeveloped economies in other republics. By the mid-1980s, 
Slovenes were highly critical of federal (Serb-dominated) financial 
policy, especially when the new procedures failed to reduce their 
payments for support of a deteriorating economy in Kosovo and 
when rising inflation hurt their economy (see Structure of the Econ- 
omy, ch. 3). 

The combination of Western intellectual influence and increas- 
ing pressure for independent solution of economic problems led 
to formation of many official and unofficial noncommunist political 


Serbian demonstrator 
burning photograph 
of Tito, Belgrade, 1990 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

groups in Slovenia, which became the center of a major political 
controversy in the late 1980s. Several politically significant acts by 
official and unofficial Slovenian groups posed a clear threat that 
the republic's substantial industrial, financial, and agricultural 
resources might be withdrawn from the federation. While loudly 
opposing the Serbian thrust for centralization and dominance of 
Kosovo, the Slovenes liberalized their own political system by add- 
ing multicandidate elections, open media discussion of all issues, 
and noncommunist political groups. In 1989 the Slovenian League 
of Communists endorsed multiparty elections, and in 1990 it re- 
named itself the Party of Democratic Renewal. 

Although Slovenian party president Milan Kucan had led a sub- 
stantial bloc of moderates as late as 1989, the momentum of new 
party formation and the failure of compromise with Serbia brought 
controversial change that threatened to carry the Slovenes farther 
from the center of the federation. Among amendments added to 
the Slovenian constitution in late 1989 were provisions limiting the 
emergency intervention power of the Yugoslav government in 
Slovenia and affirming Slovenia's right to secede from the federa- 
tion if "national self-determination" were not guaranteed in the 
next round of constitutional changes. Those amendments were 
viewed as an alarming precedent by nearly all non-Slovenian po- 
litical groups, and they were declared at variance with the national 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

constitution by an advisory decision of the Constitutional Court 
of Yugoslavia a few months after passage. 

As economic success and political reform progressed at home, 
the Slovenes increasingly perceived Serbian nationalism as a major 
danger. For Slovenes, Serbian nationalism threatened to reinstate 
external control of economic resources and political processes. At 
the time of the Fourteenth Party Congress in early 1990, the fed- 
eral government and the LCY were split between pro-Serbian and 
pro-Slovenian factions. Slovenian party officials condemned Ser- 
bian oppression in Kosovo and the Serbian demand for a one man- 
one vote national decision-making system, which would allow Serbia 
to dominate because of its large population. In 1989 the Front for 
Independent Slovenia appeared with demands for total indepen- 
dence. Slovenia was the first Yugoslav republic ever to hold multi- 
party elections, in early 1990. At the time of the elections, the 
Slovenian Social Democratic Alliance was one of only two Yugo- 
slav noncommunist parties to have expanded past republican bor- 
ders. That group was part of a coalition called Demos, which easi- 
ly won the first (parliamentary) phase of elections, defeating Ku- 
ian's former communists with a platform that included secession 
from Yugoslavia. In the presidential runoff, the popular reformist 
Ku£an won, making him the first freely elected communist head 
of government in Eastern Europe and creating a mixed republi- 
can government in Slovenia. 


Serbia was the largest of the Yugoslav republics in population 
and territory (see table 19, Appendix). Serbs also had the largest 
total ethnic representation in the other republics. Throughout the 
twentieth century, the Serbs saw themselves as the basis of whatever 
Yugoslav federation existed because of their central role in 
nineteenth-century liberation struggles and in both world wars. Af- 
ter 1945 this concept was represented in a consistent Serbian drive 
for strong federal government and a strong, centralized LCY. Vir- 
tually all the steps in postwar political decentralization diminished 
Serbian dominance by giving equal status to all republics and 
weakening federal institutions. Under Aleksandar Rankovic, Ser- 
bia conducted a Serbianization campaign against ethnic minori- 
ties in Vojvodina, Kosovo, and Bosnia and Hercegovina to advance 
Yugoslav unity. Rankovi^'s fall in 1966 weakened this drive, and 
the party reforms of the 1960s and 1970s weakened Serbian in- 
fluence on party appointments in other republics. The long politi- 
cal dominance of Tito, a Croat, also diminished Serbian power. 


Government and Politics 

The 1974 Constitution rekindled the Serbian drive for dominance 
by limiting Serbian control of Kosovo and Vojvodina, constituent 
provinces with large non-Slav ethnic groups. By applying the con- 
sensus principle to the assemblies of the republics, the 1974 Con- 
stitution gave Kosovo and Vojvodina virtual veto power within the 
Serbian assembly. This was a serious obstacle to Serbian control 
over Kosovo in the face of a strong Albanian separatist movement 
in the province. Therefore, recapture of the Serbian provinces be- 
came the chief political goal of all Serbian leaders after 1974. In 
1980 a new generation of Serbian political leaders appeared, led 
by the moderate Ivan Stambolic. Stambolic used conciliation and 
his considerable national stature to seek the approval of the other 
republics for reducing provincial autonomy. Failing in this effort, 
Stambolic was displaced in 1987 by his protege, Slobodan Milo- 
sevic. As head of the League of Communists of Serbia, Milosevic 
used the nationalist appeal of the Kosovo issue and a national eco- 
nomic crisis to overcome the Stambolic faction. Milosevic's ascen- 
dancy was a triumph for the concept of a monolithic Serbian 
communist party permitting no dissent and aiming for ultimate 
dominance of the LCY. 

In 1988 Serbian officials began orchestrating mass demonstra- 
tions to support the Serbian position in Kosovo. These demonstra- 
tions led to purges of the party leadership in both Kosovo and 
Vojvodina. The main goal of the purges was to ensure passage of 
amendments to the Serbian constitution that effectively abolished 
the autonomy of the provinces in the name of Serbian political unity. 
Party leaders in other republics condemned both the purges and 
the amendments. Serbia was expected to make a strong effort to 
influence a new round of amendments to the federal Constitution, 
scheduled for 1992, toward recentralizing political institutions under 
greater Serbian control. 

At the end of the 1980s, Milosevic completely dominated Serbi- 
an politics, using mass demonstrations and media campaigns in 
every republic except Slovenia to stir support for Serbia against 
the Kosovo drive for separatism. In 1989 Serbia established direct 
popular election of its president and assembly delegates, but nomi- 
nation of all candidates remained under party control. The idea 
of legalizing opposition parties received little attention by the Ser- 
bian party, which through 1990 gave only lip service to pluralism 
within the party. Nonpolitical alternative groups such as the 
Writers' Association of Serbia were permitted. By 1990 the dic- 
tatorial and manipulative image of Milosevic, particularly his 
unyielding approach to the Kosovo issue, had isolated Serbia po- 
litically within the federation. Only Montenegro continued to vote 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

consistently with Serbia on federal issues. By contrast, Milosev- 
ic's tough nationalist approach to "Serbian unification" made him 
very popular with his fellow Serbs, who often compared him to 
Tito. In 1989 Milosevic was elected by a wide margin as president 
of Serbia on a platform of political and economic reform. The Serb- 
Slovene conflict escalated in 1990 when the Serbian government 
ordered the severing of commercial ties with Slovenia in retalia- 
tion for the Slovenian prohibition of Serbian nationalist demon- 
strations in Ljubljana. 


The province of Kosovo, formerly called Kosovo- Metohija, be- 
came the locus of an important political issue during the late 1960s. 
Removal of the Rankovic state security system in 1966 allowed the 
ethnic Albanian majority in Kosovo to demonstrate for improve- 
ment of very poor economic and political conditions. In the next 
decade, a number of Albanian nationalist groups were active on 
a small scale in Kosovo. The decentralizing effect of the 1974 Con- 
stitution further reduced oppression of Albanians in the province; 
however, loosening state control increased the scale and visibility 
of nationalist disturbances in the 1970s. Large-scale demonstra- 
tions in 1981 led to a complete purge of the Kosovo party, a harsh 
security crackdown, and bitter relations between Albania and Yu- 
goslavia (see Foreign Policy, this ch.). 

In the 1980s, the gravity of the Kosovo issue increased for several 
reasons: Kosovo's drive for republic status or total separation in- 
creasingly was supported by blatant Albanian intervention; Yu- 
goslavia's richest republics were frustrated by federal investment 
requirements designed to improve Kosovo's economic situation 
without any return for their money; and uncontrollable national- 
ism in one part of the federation threatened to encourage similar 
bursts of independence elsewhere in the multinational state. The 
use of the Kosovo issue to reinspire Serbian nationalism was espe- 
cially worrisome to other republics, while it radicalized most of Yu- 
goslavia's Albanian population. In 1989 Milosevic called Kosovo 
"the heart of Serbia," citing Kosovo's history as the center of the 
medieval Serbian kingdom that ended in a storied defeat by the 
Turks in 1389 (see The Serbs and Serbia, Vojvodina, and Mon- 
tenegro, ch. 1). However, Kosovo had similar historical significance 
for its largely Albanian population of the late twentieth century; 
this created an ethnic political struggle that some observers com- 
pared to the West Bank situation in the Middle East. 

By 1988 intensified political demonstrations and the deadlock 
of the Serbian and Albanian wings of the Kosovo party provided a 


Nationalist Serbs in anti-Tito demonstration, Belgrade, 1990 

Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

pretext for political intervention by the Serbian government in 
Kosovo. A thorough Serbianization campaign begun in 1987 had 
undercut local compromise efforts by removing all party officials 
showing sympathy for the Kosovan nationalist cause. By one esti- 
mate, 485,000 Kosovans were arrested between 1981 and 1987. 
Civil rights increasingly were suspended. The intervention also 
eliminated the influence of Azem Vlasi, an ethnic Albanian who 
had been a strong, moderate spokesman for liberalization in the 
Kosovo League of Communists. Vlasi and his colleagues were 
purged in 1989, and their prolonged trial by the Serbian govern- 
ment for counterrevolutionary activities brought strong condem- 
nation from Slovenia and Croatia. 

The internal politics of Kosovo were dominated by severe eco- 
nomic backwardness and hatred between the Albanian majority 
and the Serbian minority. Conditions worsened in the 1980s despite 
disproportionately high national investment in the region (see 
Regional Disparities, ch. 3). Although the Serbs claimed that the 
Albanians ran an organized campaign to drive out Slavs, economic 
conditions were at least as instrumental in the decline of the Serbi- 
an population. Many Albanians also left to seek employment else- 
where. After the purge of 1989, the Kosovo League of Communists 
and the provincial assembly were puppet organizations controlled 


Yugoslavia: ' Country Study 

from Belgrade — a situation that exacerbated nationalist feeling and 
protests. In 1990 political control of the province still eluded the 
Serbian party, which continued its polemics with the Slovenes and 
Croats over Kosovo policy. An opposition group, the Democratic 
Alliance of Kosovo, began a propaganda campaign against the Serbs 
and the League of Communists of Kosovo that year. In 1990 the 
fragmentation of the LCY at its Fourteenth Party Congress pro- 
voked a new series of violent demonstrations against Serbian op- 
pression. The FEC drafted a plan to alleviate the Kosovo crisis, 
but factions in the Federal Assembly delayed its passage. 


Vojvodina, the second province of the Serbian Republic, oc- 
cupied a much more favorable economic and geographic position 
than Kosovo, but its political status was equally ambiguous in the 
1980s. This was emphasized in 1981, when ethnic Hungarians 
demonstrated in support of the Kosovan nationalists. In 1987 the 
president of Vojvodina rejected categorically Serbia's proposal that 
provincial autonomy be repealed. In late 1988 mass pro-Serbian 
demonstrations orchestrated by Milosevic in Vojvodina forced resig- 
nation of the Vojvodina provincial party presidium, which was 
replaced by a pro-Serbian group. This move ensured support for 
the recentralization amendments to the Serbian constitution in 1989. 
In the Serbian presidential election of 1989, Milosevic received a 
strong majority in Vojvodina, but not in Kosovo. Vojvodinian po- 
litical leaders of the new regime firmly supported amendment of 
the Serbian constitution and other pro-Serbian positions. The region 
had a history of relative stability in the Austro- Hungarian Empire, 
and the border with neighboring Hungary was tranquil. The eth- 
nic Hungarian population was much smaller (16 percent in 1991, 
down from 19 percent in 1981) than the Albanian population of 
Kosovo; the nationality key, which required balanced representation 
in party and state for the major ethnic groups in Yugoslavia, did 
not apply to the ethnic Hungarians in Vojvodina, but the province's 
relative prosperity precluded major political unrest. In 1990 Hun- 
garian activists formed the Democratic Community of Vojvodina 
Hungarians (DCVH) to advance cultural autonomy and eventual 
self-rule for the Hungarian minority. Strongly backing a united 
Yugoslavia, the DCVH advocated equal status for the Hungarian 
language and publications in Vojvodina and restoration of auton- 
omy for the province rather than independence from Serbia. 


Like Slovenia, Croatia was a relatively wealthy northwestern 


Government and Politics 

republic with longstanding cultural ties to Western Europe and a 
tolerance for liberal political experimentation. The removal of 
Rankovic in 1966 unleashed a strong Croatian nationalist move- 
ment, led by the Matica Hrvatska society. The movement played 
on Croatian fears of Serbian dominance and sought political re- 
forms that would substantially increase Croatian autonomy, but 
it clashed with Serbian and Slovenian interests and threatened the 
unity of the federation. Tito's intervention to purge the nation- 
alist elements of the Croatian party in 1972 moderated the repub- 
lic's political climate for the next two decades. 

The influence of the moderate wing of the League of Communists 
of Croatia was felt in the Serb-Slovene polemics of the 1980s, when 
the Croats often attempted to act as mediators and avoid reviving 
the ancient Serb-Croat nationalist antagonism within their repub- 
lic. Because 30 percent of the members of the League of Com- 
munists of Croatia were Serbs in 1989, a substantial difference of 
opinion arose by the end of the decade as to Croatia's proper posi- 
tion toward the issues in the Serb-Slovene dispute. The 1989 elec- 
tion of the moderate Ante Markovic, a Croat, as a reform prime 
minister, moderated Croatia's position on some federal issues. Be- 
ginning in 1988, however, both official and unofficial Croatian 
sources were highly critical of the policies of Milosevic, particular- 
ly his manipulation of party politics in Vojvodina and the staging 
of demonstrations in the Croatian district of Knin, a Serbian en- 
clave. The issue of the Serbian minority promised further conflict 
when Vojvodina proposed creation of four autonomous provinces 
in Croatia, all with large Serbian populations. Croatia strongly sup- 
ported Slovenia on the Serbian trade embargo issue in early 1990. 
Such issues caused heated polemics between Serbia and Croatia 
and between pro- and anti-Serbian factions of the League of Com- 
munists of Croatia. 

In 1989 the League of Communists of Croatia followed the Slo- 
vene party in legalizing opposition parties and establishing mul- 
tiparty elections. The republic amended its constitution in 1990 
to create the statutory basis for such elections. In 1989 the League 
of Communists of Croatia became the first Yugoslav party organi- 
zation at any level to hold direct elections of party officials. Among 
noncommunist groups formed that year were the Association for 
a Yugoslav Democratic Initiative (which had thirteen affiliates 
throughout Yugoslavia in 1990), the Croatian Democratic Union, 
and the Croatian Social Liberal Alliance, all with strong reformist 
platforms. The Croatian Democratic Union, led by former Tito col- 
league Franjo Tudjman, won a sweeping victory in the first Croatian 
ultiparty election in 1 990, forming the first postwar noncommunist 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

government in Yugoslavia. Because that coalition had a nation- 
alist and separatist platform, its success intensified the threat of 
secession and national collapse. Bosnia and Hercegovina feared 
that Croatia planned a takeover of Bosnian territory that was once 
part of Croatia. In the election, the reorganized League of Com- 
munists of Croatia and the reform Coalition of People's Accord 
trailed the Croatian Democratic Union, in that order. These de- 
velopments in Croatia consolidated the "northwest bloc" of Slove- 
nia and Croatia in Yugoslav politics, put those republics into the 
mainstream of East European political reform, and widened the 
gap between them and Serbia. 


In the divisive late 1980s, the political position of Montenegro 
remained closer to that of Serbia than did that of any other repub- 
lic. This was because of a close ethnic connection between the Serbs 
and the Montenegrin majority of the population and because Mon- 
tenegrins were the second Slavic minority "persecuted" in 
Kosovo — giving them an anti- Albanian nationalist cause similar 
to that of the Serbs. Montenegro's relatively weak economy made 
it dependent on the continued strength of the federation. Like Ser- 
bia, Montenegro was independent through most of the nineteenth 
century, a factor that influenced the Montenegrin view of nation- 
alism in the twentieth century. 

Montenegro was a strong supporter of Serbian constitutional 
amendments limiting provincial autonomy in 1989, and party 
speakers consistently criticized Slovenia's independent stance and 
its position on Kosovo. Internally, some progressive movement oc- 
curred in Montenegrin politics at the end of the 1980s. A tradi- 
tionally conservative government was ousted in 1988, following 
mass protests of economic and political conditions by workers and 
students, who received strong support from the Youth League of 
Montenegro. Six months later the entire central committee of the 
League of Communists of Montenegro was forced to resign, and 
a new central committee was named following a second wave of 
demonstrations against government inaction. The average age of 
the new central committee was forty, and the party filled many 
positions with former protest leaders. This removed the remain- 
ing members of the Tito generation from power in Montenegro. 
Nenad Bucin, elected by referendum as Montenegrin representa- 
tive to the State Presidency in 1989 advocated government partic- 
ipation by noncommunists. Alternative groups were nominally 
legalized in 1989, but did not immediately receive status or public 
access equal to that of the Montenegrin communists. 


Voting in the first multiparty 
election in Croatia, 1990 
Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

Bosnia and Hercegovina 

In the 1980s, the political positions of Bosnia and Hercegovina 
(respectively, the northern and southern parts of a region ad- 
ministered as a unit since the eighteenth century) were consistent- 
ly conservative and cool to the reforms adopted in other republics. 
This political atmosphere changed dramatically in the late 1980s. 
The entire political structure of Bosnia and Hercegovina was shaken 
by the Agrokomerc banking scandal of 1987, which the Yugoslav 
press compared to the American Watergate scandal. Hamdija Poz- 
derac, vice president and representative of Bosnia and Hercegovi- 
na in the national State Presidency, was forced to resign because 
of his link to Agrokomerc. A number of republic-level officials also 
resigned, and more than 100 party members were arrested. The 
scandal revealed corrupt financial dealings of politicians all over 
Yugoslavia, but public trust was most badly damaged in the republic 
where the scandal began. After wholesale replacement of political 
figures, a young group of progressives, led by Bosnia and Her- 
cegovina president Nijaz Djurakovic, came to. power in 1989. 

When the new Yugoslav State Presidency was chosen in 1989, 
students and progressive members of the republic's Socialist Alli- 
ance of Working People exerted pressure for popular election of 
the new representative from Bosnia and Hercegovina. Although 
this did not occur, pressure for democratization was a significant 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

new phenomenon. On national issues, Bosnia and Hercegovina 
reflected its own multiethnic composition of Serbs, Croats, and near- 
ly 40 percent Muslim Slavs. The ethnic balance, which had been 
maintained by conservative policies until the late 1980s, was threat- 
ened by intensification of nationalist movements elsewhere in the 
federation. By 1990 the republic found itself torn and manipulat- 
ed by the Serb-Slovene and Serb-Croat conflicts. The official po- 
sition of Bosnia and Hercegovina in 1990 strongly supported 
reconciliation of ethnic differences in the federation, while defending 
the ethnic individuality of the republics against homogenization. 


Next to Kosovo, Macedonia was the most economically deprived 
region of Yugoslavia. Like Kosovo, it was dependent on the richer 
republics for financial support throughout the postwar period. For 
the first forty years after World War II, political life remained placid 
and under the firm control of the local party. But with the explo- 
sion of nationalist feeling elsewhere in Yugoslavia in the late 1980s, 
the presence of substantial Albanian minorities began to compli- 
cate regional politics. Strikes and protests against economic con- 
ditions began in 1987. After that time, ethnic tensions mounted 
between Albanians and Macedonians, especially in the Albanian 
ghettos of Skopje, the capital city. Symbolic acts by Macedonian 
authorities worsened the situation. In 1989 the Macedonian assem- 
bly ratified a constitutional amendment deleting "Albanian and 
Turkish minorities" from the definition of the republic in the 1974 
republican constitution. This move, which paralleled the Serbian 
constitutional limitation of autonomy in its provinces, drew criticism 
domestically and in other republics for its nationalist overtones. 
Macedonia also had a centuries-long dispute with neighboring Bul- 
garia and Greece over the identity and treatment of Macedonian 
minorities in those countries. This external conflict was unique 
among the Yugoslav republics, and it added an independent qual- 
ity to the cause of Macedonian nationalism. 

As a small republic with voting power equal to all other repub- 
lics, Macedonia was pressured and manipulated by both Serbia 
and Slovenia in the late 1980s. During the late 1980s, Macedoni- 
an policy concentrated alternately on allegiance to Serbia and 
Macedonian nationalism, depending on which of two factions 
prevailed in the local political establishment. In 1990 the top 
Macedonian policy makers still strongly supported a united Yu- 
goslavia and opposed legalization of rival parties. However, these 
policies were increasingly challenged by an independent political 
faction led by Vasil Tupurkovski, Macedonian representative to 


Government end Politics 

the State Presidency of Yugoslavia. In 1990 Tupurkovski's faction 
moved toward formation of a separate party advocating political 

The Public and Political Decision Making 

Yugoslavia had a long tradition of open criticism of oppression, 
corruption, and incompetence in government. Yugoslav govern- 
ments also had a tradition of selective repression of opposition move- 
ments and leaders. As the initial split from Soviet dogma widened 
through the postwar decades, intellectuals such as Milovan Djilas 
and Dobrica Cosid, and groups such as Praxis and the editors of 
youth newspapers, took advantage of partial constitutional guaran- 
tees to criticize their government and society. In the 1980s, selec- 
tive prosecution for such actions diminished, and by 1990 the 
Yugoslav public received a wide range of information and oppor- 
tunities for expressing opinions. 

Djilas, Praxis, and intellectual Repression 

The most celebrated instance of dissident repression in postwar 
Yugoslavia was the case of Milovan Djilas. His often-published 
heretical political views brought Djilas official denunciation by the 
LCY and imprisonment in the 1950s and 1960s, despite his earli- 
er close association with Tito. Djilas was released from prison af- 
ter the Rankovic era ended in 1966, but he was harassed long 
afterward, and similar cases occurred through the following de- 
cades. The majority of postwar dissident writers were students and 
academics whose published material criticized the Yugoslav polit- 
ical system or advocated regional political diversity. Mihajlo Mi- 
hajlov, for example, was tried and jailed several times between 1965 
and 1975 for propaganda deemed dangerous to the state. In many 
instances, established writers such as the Serb Dobrica Cosic were 
allowed to criticize the regime harshly (6osic called Tito a "spiritual 
nihilist"), while less influential figures were prosecuted for express- 
ing the same ideas. 

In 1968 a group of intellectuals connected with the journal Praxis 
began conducting an open polemic with the theories of party ideol- 
ogist Eduard Kardelj. The group soon gained a substantial audience 
for its attacks on censorship, bureaucracy, and economic planning 
mistakes. Because the Praxis group used Marxist argumentation 
very effectively, many of its ideas were applied by economic and 
political reformers in the early 1980s. Tito finally succeeded in 
silencing Praxis in 1975 as part of a crackdown on intellectual dis- 
senters centered in Yugoslav universities. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

The most widely publicized dissident trial of the 1980s involved 
the "Belgrade Six," a group of intellectuals arrested in 1984 for 
planning a meeting with Djilas (whose views remained officially 
heretical). The group, which for several years had official permis- 
sion to meet, received international publicity that eventually forced 
the government to free three members and reduce the sentences 
of the others. 

Throughout the 1980s, measures to control free speech had a 
legal basis in the uneven civil rights provisions of the Yugoslav Con- 
stitution. The Constitution did not specifically protect privacy of 
communication from police interference; the ill-defined concepts 
of "hostile propaganda," "fostering national hatred," and 
"derogatory statements" were used to silence troublesome protest 
voices, most often on the sensitive Kosovo issue; and the lack of 
a habeas corpus principle made arbitrary detention legal. Although 
criminal trials in Yugoslavia were open to the public, political tri- 
als often were closed in the 1980s. Such techniques were used ir- 
regularly, but their existence remained a curb on popular expression 
(see Dissidence, ch. 5). 

In the 1980s, the majority of known political prisoners in Yu- 
goslavia were ethnic Albanians involved in the Kosovo liberation 
movement. In 1987 nearly all prisoners charged with "most seri- 
ous political criminal acts' ' were in this category. According to Yu- 
goslav sources, 1 ,652 people were tried for political crimes between 
1981 and 1985. Isolated crackdowns on dissent occurred in Serbia 
(a political show trial in 1984), Slovenia (army court proceedings 
against government critics in 1988), and Croatia (a blacklist of Croa- 
tian intelligentsia in 1984). But public criticism of the government 
continued in spite of such measures. 

Intellectual Opposition Groups 

The writers' associations of several republics developed large fol- 
lowings in the 1980s. The Serbian and Slovenian associations ex- 
changed polemics from opposite sides of the Kosovo issue, echoing 
the positions of their respective republics. The national Writers' 
Association of Yugoslavia held only two congresses between 1965 
and 1985 because of regional squabbles within the umbrella or- 
ganization. However, in the late 1980s the Slovenian and Serbian 
associations expressed similar positions on issues such as diversifi- 
cation of political parties, the danger of dictatorship, and human 
rights. In 1982 the Writers' Association of Serbia, which was es- 
pecially well organized and influential, formed the Committee for 
the Protection of Artistic Freedom in response to the political trial 
of poet Gojko Djogo. In 1986 the Committee for the Protection 


Government and Politics 

of Humanity and the Environment was formed under the auspices 
of the Serbian association, and it was given legal status by the 
government. The writers' groups used forums such as press con- 
ferences and open letters to express harsh criticism of Yugoslav po- 
litical life. The 1984 trial of the Belgrade Six caused Cosic to form 
the Committee for the Defense of Freedom of Thought and Ex- 
pression. This group of highly respected intellectuals issued peti- 
tions for drastic political change, and, despite being officially illegal, 
it was able to meet openly because of the stature of its members. 

Generally speaking, Serbia produced the most vigorous and 
varied intellectual dissent of the 1970s and 1980s. Most Serbian 
intellectuals supported the 1989 amendments to the Serbian con- 
stitution, but at the same time many backed Cosic's demands for 
democratization of the Serbian system once the two provinces were 
"reunited" with Serbia. In 1989 the Serbian Writers' Association 
issued a public appeal that included the following points: aboli- 
tion of the single-party system and of the LCY's power monopo- 
ly; full respect for human rights; equal rights for all citizens before 
the law; equal rights to vote and be elected to office, irrespective 
of political affiliation; an independent judiciary; and freedom of 
the press. In the same year, the Serbian group began criticizing 
the nationalist position of Milosevic, and some factions discussed 
transforming the association into a political party. 

The Media 

Throughout the postwar period, the Yugoslav press differed from 
press institutions in the other East European communist countries 
because it saw itself primarily as a source of information and only 
secondarily as an instrument of party control — despite the official 
party view that the press should be primarily a vehicle of political 
education. In the 1980s, the expression of independent viewpoints 
in the Yugoslav press generally grew. In 1981 protests by the jour- 
nalistic community broke a government-enforced silence about eth- 
nic strife in Kosovo. A new federal press law was passed in 1985 
to broaden and standardize the types of information available to 
the public through the newspapers. During that time the press con- 
sistently criticized government political and economic policy, as 
well as the FEC and the national and regional parties. The State 
Presidency received less negative comment. However, journalists 
were required to join the party-controlled League of Journalists 
of Yugoslavia, and expulsion from the league meant the end of a 
career. Topics generally closed to objective press discussion in the 
1 980s were foreign policy, revision of official national history, reli- 
gious policy, and nationalities policy. In the politically charged period 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

of the Fourteenth Party Congress (January 1990), press restraint 
decreased noticeably as dissident movements, corruption, and pris- 
on conditions received particular attention. 

Besides the effect of censorship, the lack of a centralized infor- 
mation system also made the flow of public information through 
Yugoslavia uneven. Each Yugoslav republic had its own press 
system, and the media operated as individual self-managed enter- 
prises. Tanjug, the national news agency, acted as the "official 
source" of stories, and its coverage provided guidance in the han- 
dling of controversial topics. Because publications were not sub- 
sidized, the profit motive made periodicals responsive to reader 

All media required the political sponsorship of the national or 
regional socialist alliances, and each system reflected the national 
political position of its region. The most extreme example of this 
in the late 1980s was the daily newspaper Politika, published in Bel- 
grade. That daily, an object of great respect since its founding be- 
fore World War I, came under the complete control of the Milosevic 
government. As the main organ of the Serbian nationalist propagan- 
da campaign based on the Kosovo issue, Politika engaged in sharp 
polemics with Delo, the official organ of the Slovenian Socialist Al- 
liance of Working People, and other daily publications. By 1990 
other elements of the Serbian media were also controlled by the 
MiloSevic faction. In general, the Yugoslav youth press was the 
most troublesome to political authorities; periodicals in this category 
discussed all taboo topics without being eliminated, but they were 
constantly harassed by authorities. One of the most controversial 
periodicals of the late 1980s was Mladina, a Slovenian student weekly 
whose wide circulation spread the most radical political ideas de- 
veloped in that republic. 


The print and broadcast media were nominally free of censor- 
ship in the 1980s, but printed material was reviewed by official 
publication boards that ensured party control. Those boards were 
able to stop publication of some new radical periodicals, but in 1985 
their ban of Mladina was overruled by the Slovenian supreme court. 
Only postpublication censorship was exercised for periodicals, and 
individual banned issues circulated widely in spite of the system. 
Over a dozen Croatian magazines and student newspapers were 
banned because of anti-Serbian positions in the late 1980s. Late 
in the 1980s, book censorship was loosened and cases of official 
interference decreased. The list of taboo topics for books was simi- 
lar to that for periodicals. Foreign dissident writings were widely 


First televised Orthodox Easter service, Cathedral of St. Sava, Belgrade, 1990 

Courtesy Charles Sudetic 

available, as were the writings of Djilas, which still were banned 
officially in 1990. 

For the first time in 1990, political opposition parties received 
permission to televise their views prior to an election. Slovenian 
and Croatian self-managed television enterprises reserved air time 
for all parties participating in elections for the republican assem- 
blies. The stations observed strict equality of time allotment. Com- 
mercial purchase of additional time was forbidden, to avoid giving 
richer parties disproportionate access to the viewing public. 

Foreign Policy 

With the exception of the first three postwar years, the foreign 
policy of Yugoslavia emphasized balanced relations between East 
and West and strong links with as many nonaligned nations as pos- 
sible. As in domestic politics, a primary motivation for this course 
was to differentiate Yugoslavia from the members of the Soviet 
alliance; having made that distinction in all areas by 1952, Tito 
pragmatically sought commercial and political relations wher- 
ever and whenever advantageous. After weathering numerous crises 
in its relations with both superpowers, Yugoslavia entered the 1990s 
as titular head of a diminished Nonaligned Movement; political 
and economic reversals in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

forced Yugoslavia to move closer to the wealthy West European 
nations, with the ultimate goal of membership in the European Eco- 
nomic Community (EEC — see Glossary). 

The Government Foreign Policy Mechanism 

The foreign policy of Yugoslavia was conducted at the highest 
level by the State Presidency, the president of which was the offi- 
cial representative of the country. The line of authority extended 
from the president through the FEC to the Secretariat for Foreign 
Affairs. Nationality quotas for personnel in the secretariat and 
subordinate levels ensured each republic an equal voice in foreign 
policy formulation. The quota was also u'sed in making foreign 
service appointments and staffing embassies abroad — a policy criti- 
cized because it did not always permit the most qualified person- 
nel access to foreign policy positions. Committees of the LCY and 
SAWPY (also apportioned by nationality) also had significant for- 
eign policy input. 


Beginning with its exit from the Soviet sphere in 1948, Yugo- 
slavia sought appropriate alliances to ensure its security. As early 
as 1953, relations were established with nonaligned Asian coun- 
tries. In 1954 Tito suggested, then withdrew from, a Balkan alli- 
ance with Greece and Turkey. When the colonial empires of the 
West European nations broke up in the decades following, Yugo- 
slavia became a leader of the bloc of new nations created by that 
process. The former colonies considered the economic and politi- 
cal success of the Yugoslav nonalignment policy a positive model, 
and Tito joined Jawaharlal Nehru of India, Sukarno of Indone- 
sia, Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, and Gamal Abdul Nasser of Egypt 
as founders of the Nonaligned Movement in the mid-1950s. Found- 
ing principles of that movement were opposition to all foreign in- 
tervention and peaceful coexistence. The official nonaligned position 
of Yugoslavia was declared at the Belgrade Conference of 
Nonaligned Nations in 1961. In the 1950s and 1960s, Yugosla- 
via's position gave it international prestige because both the Unit- 
ed States and the Soviet Union required support from the growing 
bloc of independent nations it led. 

Within the nonaligned group, Yugoslavia leaned strongly toward 
the Arab nations and supported the Palestine Liberation Organi- 
zation against Israel — mainly because of Tito's friendship with 
Nasser and the influence of the large Yugoslav Muslim popula- 
tion. Tito personified Yugoslavia's international position; in the 
1960s and 1970s, he traveled worldwide to cement relations in the 


Government and Politics 

Third World. Although Nikita S. Khrushchev had mended Soviet 
relations with Yugoslavia in the mid-1950s, that relationship was 
threatened by periodic Soviet expansionism, and Tito successfully 
sought to balance Western and Soviet influences. Part of that 
balancing act was development of close relations with China in the 
1970s; at that time, China was hostile to the Soviet Union and open- 
ing communications with the West, making it an effective coun- 
terbalance for Tito. Yugoslav-Chinese relations remained warm 
through the 1980s. 

In the 1970s, Yugoslavia became a moderate force in the 
Nonaligned Movement, balancing the strong pro-Soviet influence 
of Fidel Castro (to whom Tito had initially given strong support). 
Castro's election as chairman of the Nonaligned Movement in 1979 
was considered a defeat for Tito. Between 1955 and 1979, the 
Nonaligned Movement grew from 25 to 117 member countries, 
largely because of Tito's leadership. When Tito died in 1980, Yu- 
goslavia lost its leadership role to Cuba, and the Nonaligned Move- 
ment leaned decidedly toward the Soviet side. But Yugoslavia 
regained an important role in the eighth summit meeting (1986) 
of the organization. In 1989 the ninth summit meeting was held 
in Belgrade, and Yugoslavia became leader of the movement until 
1992. In the 1980s, the main Yugoslav role in the Nonaligned 
Movement was using the provisions of the Helsinki Accords (see 
Glossary) of 1975 to lobby for easing the Cold War tensions that 
flared in Europe and mediating conflicts between Third World na- 
tions such as Iraq and Iran. Yugoslavia was especially concerned 
with Middle Eastern events that endangered its oil supply. 

Although emphasis changed somewhat, Tito's nonalignment poli- 
cy remained in place for the entire decade following his death. 
Although hosting the meeting and regaining chairmanship of the 
Nonaligned Movement improved Yugoslavia's international stand- 
ing, many Yugoslavs (especially in Croatia and Slovenia) ques- 
tioned the value of a leadership position among a group of 
impoverished nations long after the initial purpose of the move- 
ment had changed. The credibility of the movement decreased in 
the 1980s because of Castro's influence, and by 1990 the disap- 
pearance of monolithic communism from Eastern Europe had 
changed the entire definition of nonalignment. Even in Tito's time, 
Yugoslavia gained only prestige from its leadership of Third World 
countries poorer than itself; it lost much money in unrepaid loans 
to those countries. As the 1990s began, domestic pressures increased 
to strengthen political and economic ties with Western Europe, 
which could provide much- needed economic aid. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

The Soviet Union 

Yugoslav relations with the Soviet Union remained stable in the 
decade after Tito's death. Through the mid-1980s, Yugoslav poli- 
cy toward the Soviet Union was partly based on the possibility that 
one side in an internal Yugoslav ethnic conflict might invite the 
Soviet Union to intervene, providing a pretext for restoring Yu- 
goslavia to the Warsaw Pact. The 1948 rift with the Soviet Union 
was repaired by the Belgrade Declaration of 1955, in which the 
Soviet Union conceded the right of other socialist countries to in- 
terpret Marxism in their own way. But in the ensuing three de- 
cades, covert Soviet contacts with illegal nationalist and pro-Soviet 
groups in Yugoslavia kept alive the fear that the Soviet Union might 
intervene (see Threat Perception, ch. 5). 

As a leader of the nonaligned movement, Tito often criticized 
Soviet policy. His stand against the 1968 Soviet-led Warsaw Pact 
invasion of Czechoslovakia caused friction, and relations remained 
uneven throughout the 1970s. That decade culminated in a strong 
Yugoslav condemnation of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 
1979. But in the 1980s, official Yugoslav policy favored political 
and economic rapprochement, and the Soviet Union remained the 
country's largest trading partner throughout the period (see Trading 
Partners, ch. 3). In that decade, the two countries remained ideo- 
logical rivals in the socialist world, with Afghanistan as the chief 
subject of Yugoslav polemics against Soviet policy. In 1988 Soviet 
General Secretary Mikhail S. Gorbachev and Defense Minister 
Dmitrii Iazov made official visits to reassure the Yugoslavs of con- 
tinued military and political stability between the two countries. 
The fall of East European communist governments in 1989 eased 
the threat that the Soviet Union would invade Yugoslavia under 
any circumstances and provided an opportunity to shift the em- 
phasis of Yugoslav trade toward the West. 

The United States 

Tito cultivated positive relations with the United States to balance 
Soviet influence and to receive the substantial American econom- 
ic aid that became available after his break with the Soviet Union. 
Tension periodically resulted from Yugoslav Middle East policy, 
Tito's frequent support of Soviet causes, and from terrorist acts 
committed by Yugoslav Emigre's in the United States. However, 
Tito and his successors found important issues upon which to con- 
tinue friendly relations with the United States through the 1980s. 
The Yugoslav policy of nonalignment precluded formal security 
treaties, but protection of Yugoslav soveignty was internationally 


Prime Minister Markovic with President Bush, Washington, 1990 
Courtesy White House Photography Office 

understood as part of United States-European policy — especially 
after President Jimmy Carter made a specific policy statement to 
that effect in 1978. Tension rose in 1989, when resolutions of the 
United States Congress condemned Yugoslav human rights poli- 
cies and were labeled as uninformed interference in internal Yu- 
goslav affairs. The stimulus for this disagreement was Yugoslav 
policy toward Dobroslav Paraga, an exiled Croatian separatist who 
became a leader of extremist emigres in North America. On an 
official visit to the United States following that exchange, Prime 
Minister Markovic explained Yugoslav reform and human rights 
policies, and United States officials urged that Yugoslavia follow 
the contemporary reform pattern of other East European communist 
countries. Both sides agreed that the visit improved the climate 
for United States financial support of economic reforms and Unit- 
ed States understanding of internal Yugoslav political conditions. 

European Neighbors 

The issue of Macedonian nationality caused friction between Yu- 
goslavia and neighboring Bulgaria and Greece, which contained 
large Macedonian minorities. Throughout the postwar period, the 
Yugoslav press propagandized against Bulgarian expansionist poli- 
cies toward Macedonia and the failure to recognize Macedonians 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

as a separate nationality in Bulgaria. Although the Bulgarian press 
reciprocated much more strongly after the 1989 change of govern- 
ment in Bulgaria, the two governments showed little desire to mag- 
nify an issue that had been at the center of the Balkan wars before 
World War I (see The Balkan Wars and World War I, ch. 1). 

In the mid-1980s, the Yugoslav press strongly criticized the Greek 
government for failing to recognize the Macedonian Orthodox 
Church. But relations with Greece were generally warm in the 
1980s, and Yugoslavia backed the Greeks against the Turks on the 
Cyprus issue early in the decade. For diplomatic reasons, the Yu- 
goslav government did not permit Macedonian nationalist writers 
to protest Greek discrimination against Macedonians until the 
1980s. The other ethnic-based foreign policy dilemma was deal- 
ing with Albanian intervention in Kosovo. The enmity between 
Yugoslavia and Albania began with Tito's repudiation of Stalinism 
and with personal animosity between Albanian president Enver 
Hoxha and Tito. Stalinist Albania and revisionist Yugoslavia re- 
mained hostile throughout the postwar period, with a brief thaw 
in the late 1960s. For Albania, economic discontent in adjoining 
Kosovo was a prime weapon throughout the postwar period in 
preventing penetration of Yugoslav influence into its closed society 
and in discrediting Yugoslav economic and political innovations. 
Albania maintained strong cultural ties with Kosovo (which con- 
tained over half as many Albanians as Albania itself), while remain- 
ing isolated from the rest of Yugoslavia. Officially, the Yugoslav 
government strongly condemned Albanian intervention in Kosovo, 
although the northwestern republics of Croatia and Slovenia insisted 
that Serbian intransigence was the root of the Kosovo problem. 

Relations with Hungary, the other neighbor with a substantial 
ethnic minority within Yugoslavia, continued without major com- 
plication. In light of Hungarian political reforms, new agreements 
in 1989 and 1990 demilitarized the common border and expanded 
economic ties, emphasizing regional cooperation that also includ- 
ed Austria. 

The Middle East and Western Europe 

Yugoslav policy toward the Middle East continued the Tito line 
through the 1980s, supporting the Palestine Liberation Organiza- 
tion (PLO) and forswearing relations with Israel. This policy con- 
tinued to be driven by the need to protect sources of oil and other 
imports from that area. When PLO head Yasir Arafat made an 
official visit to Belgrade in 1988 to urge that Yugoslavia act as a 
peacemaker in the Middle East, he was received warmly. In 1989 
Israel urged that Yugoslavia accord it diplomatic recognition so 


Government and Politics 

that the 1989 summit meeting of the Nonaligned Movement also 
could be used for advancing peace in the Middle East. Yugoslavia 
did not do so. At the turn of the decade, Yugoslavia also sought 
to resume the close relations with Egypt initially established be- 
tween Tito and Nasser. This was given priority because Egypt had 
rejoined the League of Arab States and become a major force in 
regional peace efforts. 

By 1990 Yugoslavia's relations with West European nations were 
defined by the need to participate more fully in European markets 
and alleviate a grave balance of payments situation. Budimir Lon- 
car, secretary for foreign affairs in the Markovic government, was 
especially active in talks with Italy and the Federal Republic of Ger- 
many (West Germany), Yugoslavia's largest West European trade 
partners in the 1980s, at the turn of the decade (see Foreign Trade, 
ch. 3). In the case of both countries, past political issues hampered 
progress: West Germany continued to refuse World War II repa- 
rations claims by Yugoslavia, and bad feelings were caused by treat- 
ment of the Slovenian minority in Italy. Another problem in the 
late 1980s was the decline of leftist political parties in West Euro- 
pean countries, notably Italy, France, and West Germany; those 
parties naturally were more sympathetic to Yugoslav positions than 
the more conservative groups that dominated by 1990. In its rela- 
tions with the North Adantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Yu- 
goslavia pressed for designation of the Mediterranean Sea as a 
"zone of peace" to eliminate the danger posed by American mis- 
siles in nearby Italy and to defuse tension in the Middle East. 

Yugoslavia made frequent overtures for membership in the EEC 
to expand markets for its exports in the 1980s and to compensate 
for increased protectionism within the community. The EEC made 
clear the requirement that Yugoslavia establish a national multiparty 
system before admittance would be considered. This increased the 
incentive to end domination of the LCY and follow the example 
of liberalization set by 1990 in Eastern Europe. Meanwhile, Yu- 
goslavia built a potential bridge to the EEC by establishing closer 
ties with members of the European Free Trade Association 
(EFTA — see Glossary), a group of neutral European nations given 
special trade status by the EEC (see Trading Partners, ch. 3). 

The Political Agenda for the 1990s 

As Yugoslavia entered the 1990s, four major political problems 
remained unsolved: achieving meaningful, nationwide economic 
reform to save the country from the economic decay that had oc- 
curred in the 1980s; finding and institutionalizing procedures for 
compromise among regions with increasingly diverse political and 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

economic interests; forging useful political relations with Western 
nations willing to provide economic aid and making foreign poli- 
cy adjustments to harmonize with new political conditions in Eu- 
rope; and negating the divisive influence of the rotation system to 
ensure selection of national leaders competent to focus attention 
on solving all- Yugoslav issues. Ultimately, resolution of all those 
problems depended on restructuring the national political system 
to allow for multiple parties and accurate representation of cur- 
rent economic interest groups; such representation required a break- 
down of the traditional regional fiefdoms of party and enterprise 

Because self-managed socialism was the foundation of both eco- 
nomic and political institutions in Yugoslavia, economic and po- 
litical issues were inseparable in the post-Tito period. For that 
reason, formation of economic policy was the main driving force 
of political decision making in the late 1980s and early 1990s. An 
important aspect of the economic reform issue was the desperate 
need for an all- Yugoslav program for equitable division of the natur- 
al resources distributed so unevenly among the six republics. 
Without unanimous backing for such a program by all six repub- 
lics, only the richer republics could function in the market econo- 
my specified in reform programs; however, without sufficient 
motivation to continue their financial contributions to the federa- 
tion, Slovenia and Croatia would declare economic independence 
and demolish the national economy. 

Because most members of the intelligentsia belonged to the party, 
criticism and reform proposals from that important quarter were 
frequently cautious in the 1980s. Although new political energy 
and diversity in several republics promised the eventual reversal 
of this tendency and the uprooting of old-line centers of political 
power, such change had not yet altered the paths of political pow- 
er in 1990. Historically, the shape of Yugoslav regional political 
interests changed only in times of common threat (such as inva- 
sion or economic disaster) or if a strong leader were skillful and 
determined enough to focus the attention of all factions on survival 
of the federation. In 1990 all regions continued to declare their com- 
mitment to Tito's federal goal as a matter of common survival. 
The less wealthy republics — Montenegro, Macedonia, and Bos- 
nia and Hercegovina — adhered most strongly to this line because 
they obviously could not survive outside the federal structure. 
Meanwhile, the most powerful republics — Croatia, Serbia, and 
Slovenia — took advantage of the vacuum in the national leader- 
ship to alternate between defending the federation and asserting 
local sovereignty, depending on political conditions. 


Government and Politics 

But while politicians were swearing allegiance to the Yugoslav 
nation, the updating and restating of historical conflicts continued 
into the 1990s, always threatening to overcome constructive polit- 
ical approaches. Long-standing animosities remained between Ser- 
bia and Croatia, the Albanian minority and the Macedonians in 
Macedonia, and the Slavic minority and the Albanian majority 
in Kosovo (see Macedonia, ch. 1 ; The Kingdom of Yugoslavia, 
ch. 1; Kosovo, this ch.). 

In 1990 the Serbian-Slovenian split in the LCY severely limited 
the unifying role of that organization and its policy input to the 
government. Because the party had played the role of national syn- 
thesizer of interests, the LCY split also was the final blow for Ti- 
to's concept of mandatory consensus among factions in national 
decision making. Only the Yugoslav government institutions them- 
selves remained in an all- Yugoslav power role, but those institu- 
tions had never been tested on their own merits as the final arbiters 
of conflicting interests on behalf of the federation as a whole. 

Besides the task of wholly remaking the Yugoslav economic struc- 
ture, the government faced an escalating crisis in Kosovo. In 1990 
Kosovo was the most critical of many domestic problems unresolved 
since the 1980s because of the struggle between the Serbian and 
the Slovenian factions of the party. 

As the 1990s began, the political culture of Yugoslavia was in 
an unprecedented state of flux. To reach his goal of separating his 
government completely from communist domination, Prime Min- 
ister Markovic pushed new laws that would allow national, 
multiparty elections in 1990. Substantial opposition met his 
proposals in the Federal Assembly and the State Presidency, 
however — especially because at the time of the proposed changes 
only Slovenia and Croatia had committed themselves to a multiparty 
system at the republic level. 

In 1990 each side in the Serbian- Slovenian conflict had goals 
that, if reached, could threaten or enhance the health of the politi- 
cal culture. On the one hand, a reasonable case was made for a 
strong, Serb-dominated state as the most efficient way to achieve 
any truly national program; but on the other hand, that scenario 
promised litde progress toward political reform or pluralism, and 
it threatened the independence of other republics. Diametrically 
opposed was the position of Croatia and Slovenia, which included 
political movements promising a highly diversified political culture, 
with free input from all parts of society. But the efficacy of such 
a culture in achieving short-range, drastic national reform was very 
doubtful. Meanwhile, the new East European spirit of democracy 
infected all the republics and provinces of Yugoslavia through 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

numerous intellectual and media channels. Republic communist 
parties, many with young, energetic leadership, liberalized their 
approach to dissent from within, and dozens of noncommunist po- 
litical groups challenged every orthodox belief of the old order. 
Many feared that these events would mean total fragmentation of 
the political structure and a return to the instability that preceded 
World War II. But the long, slow process of liberalization that Tito 
initiated in 1948 was clearly accelerating as the 1990s began. 

* » * 

A number of useful monographs on the Yugoslav political sys- 
tem appeared in the 1980s. The Politics of Ethnicity in Eastern Eu- 
rope, edited by George Klein and Milan J. Reban, contains a chapter 
summarizing the ethnic dynamics behind contemporary political 
institutions. Yugoslavia: Politics, Economics, and Society by Bruce J. 
McFarlane, is a multidimensional account that provides historical 
background as well as contemporary analysis, stressing the link- 
age of economic and political issues. Harold Lydall's Yugoslavia in 
Crisis also emphasizes economics as a vital component of the con- 
temporary political crisis, with an in-depth description of economic 
and political institutions. The Yugoslavs by Dusko Doder is an in- 
formal cultural description providing much insight to the behavior 
of Yugoslav groups and institutions. Yugoslavia in the 1980s, edited 
by Pedro Ramet, is a collection of essays on political institutions, 
domestic issues, foreign policy, and Yugoslav political philosophy. 
Finally, the essay collection entitled Yugoslavia: A Fractured Federal- 
ism, edited by Dennison Rusinow, covers official and unofficial po- 
litical power centers and their roles in the decision-making process 
at all levels of government. (For further information and complete 
citations, see Bibliography.) 


Chapter 5. National Security 

Members of Yugoslav People's Army 

IN 1990 THE NATIONAL SECURITY of Yugoslavia reflected 
various strengths and weaknesses of its history, society, economy, 
and politics. Adhering to its nonaligned foreign policy, Yugosla- 
via belonged to no military alliance and maintained an omnidirec- 
tional defense posture. Although potential invasion by the Soviet 
Union remained the primary factor in Yugoslav defense planning, 
external threats to Yugoslavia were greatly reduced in 1990. The 
country's military doctrine of Total National Defense (TND) em- 
phasized coordination between a standing army and large num- 
bers of ordinary citizens organized into locally based militia units. 
TND was designed to counter a massive Soviet-led Warsaw Pact 
invasion. It used the wartime experience of Yugoslavia's partisan 
guerrilla fighters as its model. 

The armed forces consisted of the Yugoslav People's Army (YPA) 
and the Territorial Defense Forces (TDF). The YPA, a regular 
force of more than 180,000 troops, was organized into three armed 
services — the army, the air force, and the navy. Most soldiers in 
the YPA were conscripts who were led by a professional officer 
corps. Apparently an effective fighting force, the YPA generally 
exercised control over the large, militia-like TDF. The YPA exer- 
cised autonomy in military matters and also exerted considerable 
influence within the League of Communists of Yugoslavia (LC Y — 
see Glossary) and the civilian government. 

In 1990 the YPA retained both popular prestige and priority ac- 
cess to national economic resources, but circumstances were chang- 
ing. Some citizens increasingly viewed the YPA as a vehicle for 
domination by the Republic of Serbia, while others saw it as the 
country's only safeguard against divisive interests. Meanwhile, eco- 
nomic stringency obliged the YPA to accept reduced budgets and 

In 1990 the internal threats of nationalism (based on claims of 
nations and nationalities — see Glossary), separatism, and politi- 
cal and economic crises were more acute than any conceivable ex- 
ternal threat to Yugoslavia's national security. The YPA's mission 
to defend the country's independence against external aggression 
was undisputed. However, its mission of protecting the constitu- 
tional order against change from within aroused controversy. The 
LCY and the civilian government increasingly looked to the YPA 
to ensure public order against nationalist and separatist activity 
and the ensuing political and social crises. The military strongly 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

supported continued survival of the unified federal state. However, 
like Yugoslav society as a whole, the YPA was beset by ethnic 

Josip Broz Tito, the only modern Yugoslav leader to successful- 
ly balance military and political roles, believed that the YPA had 
to protect the established political and economic system against in- 
ternal opponents because domestic divisions would weaken the 
country's defense against external threats. In a time of reduced 
foreign threats, however, many Yugoslav leaders believed the YPA 
should restrict its role to external defense, minimizing its internal 
security functions. 

Development of the Armed Forces 

The history of the Yugoslav nations and nationalities is full of 
foreign invasion and subjugation. The Ottoman Empire, Habs- 
burg Empire, and Nazi Germany dominated Yugoslav territories 
to a greater or lesser extent for most of the last 500 years (see His- 
tories of the Yugoslav Peoples to World War I, ch. 1). Times of 
relative security and independence resulted from an overall stra- 
tegic balance among great powers or superpowers in Europe. 
However, the People's Liberation Army and Partisan Detachments 
of Yugoslavia, commonly known as the Partisans (see Glossary), 
were an important part of the Allied effort in World War II. Un- 
der Tito the Partisans were largely responsible for the liberation 
of the country; after liberation they were organized well enough 
to control Yugoslavia politically. The tenacious struggle of the Par- 
tisans established a proud and heroic military tradition that extended 
long into the postwar era. The National Liberation War of 1941-45, 
as Yugoslav sources called it, remained the central frame of refer- 
ence for discussing military affairs in 1990. 

Early Development 

Nomadic tribes sporadically invaded and conquered the disparate 
peoples living in South Slav lands from Roman times until the 
nineteenth century. The Serbs resisted but fell under foreign domi- 
nation for nearly 500 years after the Ottoman Empire defeated them 
at the Battle of Kosovo Polje in 1389. Of the peoples forming 
modern Yugoslavia, only the Montenegrins remained independent 
through the centuries of foreign domination. 

The South Slavs were intensely involved in the military maneu- 
vers, power politics, and alliances in Europe that precipitated World 
War I. In 1912 Serbia joined its smaller neighbors to drive the Ot- 
toman Empire from Macedonia in the First Balkan War. The fol- 
lowing year, Serbia successfully contested Bulgarian claims to that 


National Security 

territory in the Second Balkan War. During the world war that 
followed, Serbia was attacked by Austria-Hungary and Germany 
on northern and southern fronts, and it paid dearly for its earlier 
victories. In October 1915, Serbian forces retreated from Belgrade 
to the Adriatic Sea. Evacuated to Greece to fight under a French 
command, they eventually participated in the defeat of the Cen- 
tral Powers and liberation of Serbia. 

Like other small states during the years between the world wars, 
the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (as present-day 
Yugoslavia was then called) sought protection in alliances and col- 
lective security arrangements. It allied with Czechoslovakia and 
Romania and signed a treaty of friendship with France. It joined 
the Balkan Entente with Romania, Greece, and Turkey in 1934. 
This pact obligated each signatory to defend existing borders in 
southeastern Europe against aggression by revisionist powers. 
Nevertheless, for self-protection Yugoslavia gravitated toward Ger- 
many and Italy when the major European powers failed to oppose 
Axis expansionism in the late 1930s. Yugoslavia declined a belat- 
ed French offer to conclude a mutual assistance pact in 1937. The 
policy of accommodation to the Axis powers culminated in Yu- 
goslav accession to the pro-Nazi Tripartite Pact on March 25, 1941 . 

Outraged at the government's cooperation with Nazi Germa- 
ny, air force General DuSan Simovic led a group of military officers 
in a swift coup d'etat. They declared their objections to, but were 
careful not to abrogate, the Tripartite Pact. Despite their caution, 
Germany leveled Belgrade with a massive air strike and began a 
full-scale ground invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941, without a 
formal declaration of war. 

World War II 

The thirty divisions of the Yugoslav army were not equipped 
or prepared to meet the fifty-two invading German, Italian, and 
Hungarian divisions and the Bulgarian forces that invaded Macedo- 
nia. Lacking modern equipment and adequate mobility and fire- 
power, the Yugoslav army faced a surprise attack on several fronts 
by superior and heavily armored and mechanized forces. Yugo- 
slav forces retreated rapidly to the center of the country, attempt- 
ing to use the mountainous coastal areas as a base and to maintain 
lines of supply to Greece and the Allies. However, German forces 
captured the supreme command at Sarajevo on April 17, 1941, 
and Yugoslavia formally surrendered. Germany, Italy, Hungary, 
Bulgaria, and Albania annexed or occupied parts of the country. 

A small group of officers led by Colonel Draza Mihajlovic re- 
fused to surrender and continued to resist the occupation from a 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

base in western Serbia. They called themselves the Cetnik Detach- 
ments of the Yugoslav Army of the Fatherland. The Cetnici (sing. , 
Cetnik — see Glossary) also represented the royal government-in- 
exile. They received a British military liaison officer and consider- 
able amounts of British supplies and equipment. However, they 
avoided attacking the occupiers because they feared reprisals against 
the noncombatant population. The Cetnici believed their military 
actions could not influence the course of the war, and they waited 
instead for the Allies to defeat the Axis powers. They were later 
discredited in Yugoslavia as collaborators because of their unwill- 
ingness to resist. 

The Communist Party of Yugoslavia (CPY) under Tito also re- 
fused to accept defeat. It remained inactive, however, until Ger- 
many attacked the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941. Through the 
Comintern (Communist International), the CPY received orders 
from the Soviet Union to resist the German occupation. Initially, 
the military committees of the CPY collected arms and organized 
available manpower. Then they conducted small armed attacks and 
acts of sabotage against occupying Axis forces. They waged their 
military campaign without regard to the fate of civilians living un- 
der the occupation — often the occupiers executed large numbers 
of civilians in retaliation for attacks and sabotage. The difference 
in strategies and political views quickly brought the Cetnici and 
CPY forces into a state of civil war. The former unsuccessfully at- 
tempted to attack Tito's headquarters in November 1941. 

The CPY military wing formally became the People's Libera- 
tion Army and Partisan Detachments of Yugoslavia (commonly 
known as the Partisans) on December 22, 1941 . With approximately 
80,000 fighters, the Partisans fought occupying forces, collabora- 
tors such as the Ustase (see Glossary) in Croatia, and their politi- 
cal opponents, the Cetnici. By the end of 1942, the Partisans had 
grown to 150,000 troops organized into two corps, three divisions, 
thirty -one brigades, and thirty-eight detachments. Axis occupation 
forces launched several major offensives to destroy the Partisans, 
but they failed in each case. Although the Partisans liberated some 
areas of the country, they generally avoided major engagements 
with superior forces. 

Yugoslavia became an unanticipated theater of war for the Axis. 
Large German forces were forced to remain there to protect lines 
of supply to Greece and North Africa during the critical year of 
1942. Nearly 600,000 Axis troops, thirty-eight divisions in all, were 
needed to control the country and thus were unavailable as rein- 
forcements for the pivotal battles of El Alamein and Stalingrad. 
The occupation of Yugoslavia drained significant Axis manpower 


National Security 

and resources from other theaters over a long period of time. Par- 
tisan pressure was a factor in Italy's withdrawal from the war in 
September 1943. When Italy's twenty divisions left Yugoslav ter- 
ritory, Germany had to commit even greater numbers of soldiers 
to maintain its position there. At maximum strength, the German 
occupying army included twenty-six divisions. 

By late 1943, the Partisans began to resemble a regular army. 
With captured or abandoned Italian arms, they armed 300,000 
combatants in eight corps and twenty-six divisions. At the end of 
1943, virtually all Allied military assistance was transferred from 
the Cetnici to the Partisans, whose operations had the potential 
of hastening the defeat of Germany. From then until the end of 
the war, the Partisans received over 100 tanks, 300 field guns, 2,000 
mortars, 13,000 machine guns, and 130,000 rifles from Britain and 
the United States. The Soviet Union provided even larger num- 
bers of guns, mortars, and machine guns. 

As the Germans retreated from Greece through Yugoslavia and 
the Soviet Red Army advanced into Romania in 1944, the Parti- 
sans cleared most of the German troops from the country while 
simultaneously batding their domestic UstaSe and Cetnik enemies. 
Tito flew to Moscow to meet Joseph V. Stalin and to coordinate 
Partisan and Red Army operations on Yugoslav territory. The Red 
Army wheeled north after entering the country and, together with 
the Partisans, liberated Belgrade on October 20, 1944. The Red 
Army pursued the retreating German forces from northeast Yugo- 
slavia into Hungary, leaving the Partisans in control in Yugo- 
slavia. The 800,000 troops of the People's Liberation Army officially 
became the Yugoslav People's Army (YPA) on March 1, 1945. 

Yugoslavia suffered 1.7 million dead during the war, out of a 
total population of 15 million. Of these, over 300,000 were killed 
in action. Another 400,000 were wounded. Yugoslav sources 
claimed that the Partisans inflicted over 450,000 enemy casualties. 
The amount of UstaSe and Cetnik casualties in that total is 

Postwar Development 

Demobilization, begun in late 1945, eventually reduced the size 
of the YPA by half. Disagreements with the Soviet Union soon 
had an impact on the Yugoslav military establishment. The Soviet 
Union wanted its junior ally to maintain only a small army and 
to depend mainly on the Red Army for defense. Although the Soviet 
Union offered to train that small army, the Yugoslavs rejected this 
proposal because they were dissatisfied with the quantity and quality 
of Soviet military assistance. Tito also was angered by Soviet attempts 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

to recruit a network of agents within the Yugoslav military. Upon 
the break in Soviet-Yugoslav relations in 1948, the Soviet Union 
withdrew its military advisers. 

Yugoslavia's ability to endure the Soviet-led blockade that fol- 
lowed the break was largely result of the loyalty of the YPA to Tito 
and the country. To ensure control, Tito served as his own minister 
of defense until 1953. From 1948 until 1954, the YPA maintained 
a constant state of military alert to repel a possible Soviet invasion 
to overthrow Tito. 

The United States was also a large factor in postwar Yugoslav 
military policy. President Harry S Truman gave an indirect guaran- 
tee of Yugoslavia's security when he declared its continued indepen- 
dence to be a national interest of the United States. The risk of 
a possible United States response to a Soviet invasion of Yugosla- 
via outweighed any conceivable gain. Between 1948 and 1955, the 
United States gave Yugoslavia US$600 million in direct military 
grants and an equal amount in economic aid, enabling Yugosla- 
via to devote more of its domestic resources to defense. By 1952 
the YPA had grown to 500,000 troops, and defense expenditures 
consumed 22 percent of the gross national product (GNP — see Glos- 
sary). A formal United States Military Assistance Advisory Group 
(MAAG) was established in Belgrade in 1951. It operated for ten 
years, disbursing military grants and arranging another US$1 bil- 
lion in arms sales on favorable terms. At United States urging, 
Yugoslavia sought a collective security agreement with Greece and 
Turkey in 1954. Tito withdrew from that grouping before it was 
formalized, however. Yugoslavia distanced itself from the United 
States, after Nikita S. Khrushchev repaired bilateral Soviet- 
Yugoslav ties and Tito became involved in the Nonaligned Move- 
ment in the mid-1950s. By the time the MAAG was withdrawn 
in 1961, military relations with the United States had dwindled 
to US$1 million in spare parts and ammunition purchased yearly. 

Yugoslavia depended heavily on purchases of Soviet arms and 
equipment during the 1960s and 1970s, but the Soviet threat in- 
creased at essentially the same time. The Soviet-led Warsaw Pact 
invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 forced a major change in Yu- 
goslav military doctrine. The surprise, speed, and massive superi- 
ority of the invading forces in Czechoslovakia indicated that the 
relatively small YPA could not successfully use conventional tac- 
tics to defend Yugoslav territory against a similar attack. A new 
doctrine of Total National Defense (TND) was promulgated to per- 
mit continuous, unconventional warfare by the entire population 
against a massive invasion and occupation. After implementing 
the new doctrine in the early 1970s, Yugoslavia increased its military 


National Security 

contacts with countries other than the Soviet Union; in the late 
1970s and 1980s, it began to buy more weapons from other sources 
or to produce them domestically. 

National Defense 

In 1990 Yugoslav military doctrine specified strategy and tac- 
tics to manage most likely security threats. The major problem in 
national defense was the country's status as a relatively small, 
nonaligned country in a volatile region dominated by two large 
military alliances. Yugoslavia constantly measured its military ef- 
forts against those of the alliances. But, because battlefield, arms 
development, and production competition with the larger powers 
was impossible, Yugoslav doctrine, strategy, and tactics tried to 
use limited national defense resources in the most efficient way. 

Threat Perception 

Beginning in 1945, Yugoslavia's geopolitical situation made it 
more important than size, economic resources, or military power 
alone would warrant. Wedged between the North Atlantic Treaty 
Organization (NATO; established in 1 949) and Warsaw Pact (es- 
tablished in 1955) alliances in the strategic Mediterranean region, 
Yugoslavia shared more than half its 3, 000- kilometer land border 
with three Warsaw Pact countries (Hungary, Romania, and Bul- 
garia) and also bordered two NATO members (Italy and Greece). 
Neutral Austria to the north and isolationist Albania to the south 
completed Yugoslavia's borders. 

Between 1948 and 1955, the possibility of a Soviet invasion to 
bring Yugoslavia back into the Soviet orbit remained the largest 
factor in Yugoslavia's perception of external threat. This scenario 
involved a possible military intervention in support of pro-Soviet 
Yugoslavs (see Internal Security, this ch.). Joint Soviet-Yugoslav 
declarations in 1955 and 1956 prohibited the threat or use of force 
in relations between the two countries, but the Soviet invasion of 
Hungary in November 1956 undermined the credibility of those 
declarations. The Soviet-led Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslova- 
kia in 1968 further heightened Yugoslavia's perception of exter- 
nal threat, leading to a dramatic shift in Yugoslav military doctrine 
(see Military Doctrine, this ch.). 

From 1968 until the mid-1980s, many Western and Yugoslav 
military observers conjectured that if a general conflict erupted be- 
tween the Warsaw Pact and NATO, the Soviet Union would oc- 
cupy Yugoslavia. Control of the Yugoslav territory and coastline 
would split NATO's southern flank and provide the Soviet navy 
anchorages and direct access to the Mediterranean Sea. Meanwhile, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

the Soviet Union also menaced Yugoslavia by supporting with vary- 
ing degrees of enthusiasm Bulgaria's long-standing claim to terri- 
tory in the Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. 

Albania also contributed to Yugoslavia's perception of threat dur- 
ing the 1970s and 1980s. Albania had a strong interest in the large 
ethnic Albanian population in Kosovo, economically the most back- 
ward region of Yugoslavia. The explosive conditions in Kosovo 
caused by unemployment, separatist movements, and Serbian 
repression created a constant possibility of hostilities between the 
two countries. Albania could block the Strait of Otranto between 
itself and Italy, denying Yugoslavia access to the Mediterranean 
Sea. The combined hostility of Albania and Bulgaria posed a fur- 
ther threat to Yugoslavia. After leaving the Soviet orbit in 1961, 
Albania preserved its military cooperation agreement with Bulgaria, 
although it abrogated similar agreements with the other Warsaw 
Pact countries. Continued relations between Albania and Bulgar- 
ia hinged largely on their common hostility toward Yugoslavia. 
Meanwhile, Yugoslavia sought to counteract such proximate threats 
by maintaining good relations with, and obtaining military tech- 
nology from, other European neutrals such as Austria, Switzer- 
land, and Sweden. 

After Mikhail S. Gorbachev came to power in the Soviet Union in 
1985, the perception of Soviet threat to Yugoslavia diminished. Gor- 
bachev's visit to Belgrade in March 1988 apparently allayed many 
Yugoslav strategic concerns. In a declaration similar to those of 1955 
and 1956, the two countries again pledged respect of mutual security. 

While in Yugoslavia, Gorbachev addressed the concept of limiting 
United States and Soviet arms in the Mediterranean region. The 
Yugoslav reaction to Gorbachev's proposal revealed the influence 
of the superpower balance in the region on Yugoslavia's perception 
of its security. Gorbachev's proposal essentially called for the elimi- 
nation of tactical nuclear weapons from United States forces in 
Greece and the United States Navy's Sixth Fleet in the Mediterra- 
nean. Yugoslavia opposed the proposal because it lacked correspon- 
ding reductions in the conventional weapons of the Warsaw Pact in 
the region. The diminution of NATO and United States strength 
would have reduced the relative security of Yugoslavia. 

In 1990 rapid political change in Eastern Europe, possible Soviet 
troop withdrawals, and the declining military relevance of the War- 
saw Pact combined to decrease Yugoslavia's perception of exter- 
nal threat. A unilateral Soviet invasion had become a virtual 
impossibility. Moreover, improved relations between Yugoslavia 
and Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria made a coordinated War- 
saw Pact invasion unlikely. 


National Security 

Military Doctrine 

Yugoslavia's Total National Defense (TND) doctrine reconciled 
the country's domestic and foreign policies with its strategic reali- 
ties and limitations. Formulated after the 1968 invasion of Czecho- 
slovakia, TND became Yugoslavia's official military doctrine when 
the National Defense Law of 1969 was published. 

Yugoslavia's determination to rely on its own resources and to 
remain independent and nonaligned conflicted with strategic real- 
ity. The invasion of Czechoslovakia showed that the standing con- 
ventional forces of a small country could not repulse a surprise attack 
by a qualitatively and quantitatively superior aggressor. TND was 
designed to allow Yugoslavia to maintain or eventually reestab- 
lish its independent and nonaligned status should an invasion occur. 

TND prepared the entire population to contest the occupation 
of the country and finally to liberate it. The Territorial Defense 
Forces (TDF) would mobilize the population for this purpose (see 
Territorial Defense Forces, this ch.). The combat readiness of the 
TDF meant that the steps of organization and training could be 
bypassed after the start of hostilities. The TDF would supplement 
the YPA, giving it greater defensive depth and an armed local popu- 
lation ready to support combat actions. Large numbers of armed 
civilians would increase the cost of an invasion to a potential ag- 

The most likely scenario in the doctrine of TND was general 
war between the Warsaw Pact and NATO in Europe. In such a 
situation, Yugoslavia would remain nonaligned, and it would not 
accept foreign troops of either alliance on its territory regardless 
of threats or inducements. The doctrine did recognize the likeli- 
hood that one side or the other might try to seize Yugoslav territo- 
ry as a forward staging area, to ensure lines of communication, 
or simply to deny the territory to enemy forces. Such action would 
be considered aggression and would be resisted. Regardless of ideol- 
ogy, the occupiers would be considered Yugoslavia's enemy, and 
Yugoslavia would immediately join the opposing side for the specific 
purpose of liberating its territory. 

TND was legally codified in Article 240 of the Constitution of 
1974. The article declares that the armed forces consist of the YPA 
and territorial defense units organized for nationwide armed 
resistance. It stipulates that any citizen who resists an aggressor 
is a member of the armed forces. Article 238 declares that no one 
has the right to acknowledge or sign an act of capitulation, to ac- 
cept or recognize the occupation of the country, or to prevent other 
citizens from resisting. To do so is high treason. This provision 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Figure 15. Terrain Considerations in Military Operations 

was written to prevent an occupying force from using a Yugoslav 
faction or group to request and legitimize an invasion. The Na- 
tional Defense Law of 1982 further elaborates these provisions and 
explicitly states the LCY's responsibility for defense efforts. 

Strategy and Tactics 

Yugoslav military doctrine assumed an omnidirectional threat, but 
its strategy and tactics presupposed a heavily armored and mechanized 
Soviet or Soviet-led Warsaw Pact invasion, entering from the north- 
east and driving southwest to split the country. Major exercises were 
held every few years to test the doctrine in action. Special attention 
went to coordinating combat actions between YPA and TDF units. 

Yugoslavia's defense strategies were circumscribed largely by 
geography and the size and capabilities of its forces (see fig. 15). 


National Security 

However, military leaders believed that their strategy and tactics 
were appropriate and viable and that their manpower and equip- 
ment were sufficient to defend against anticipated threats. Also, 
the experience of the wartime Partisans proved the effectiveness 
of TDF units for national defense. 

The events of 1968 changed the previously exclusive emphasis 
on a regular army, conventional war, and the defense of strategic 
areas in the north of Yugoslavia. The developed northern part of 
the country was recognized as virtually indefensible. The major 
cities, industries, and communications networks situated in the 
northeastern part of th" country would be easy strategic targets 
for a potential attacker, as such assets were in the 1968 invasion 
of Czechoslovakia. 

TND doctrine required the YPA to blunt or at least to slow an 
enemy invasion in the north. While conventional forces fought 
defensive actions along a nationwide front, 1 million to 3 million 
citizen- soldiers would mobilize in TDF units. Small TDF units 
would engage alongside regular troops in their local areas, with 
TDF tactics emphasizing mobility and light antipersonnel and 
antiarmor weapons. The terrain would become increasingly favora- 
ble to the defenders as fighting shifted from the northeast to the 
less developed mountainous and forested areas of the Adriatic 
littoral and southern Yugoslavia. On this terrain the tanks, mecha- 
nized infantry, and self-propelled artillery of a superior enemy force 
would be less effective. 

When possible, TDF units would coordinate their actions with the 
YPA. This coordination was practiced in several major nationwide 
maneuvers in the 1970s and 1980s. The TDF units also were capa- 
ble of continuing action independently under local commanders. 
According to doctrine, the TDF would resort ultimately to protrac- 
ted guerrilla warfare against an invading force to turn a blitzkrieg 
into a cosdy and lengthy occupation. Independent TDF units would 
attack occupying forces in as many places as possible and carry 
out harassing actions, ambushes, and sabotage behind enemy lines. 
Yugoslav military authorities believed that, based on current esti- 
mates of relative military power and the Partisan experience of 
World War II, 2 million enemy troops would be required to sub- 
jugate the country. Such a commitment would deter a potential 
aggressor from invading Yugoslavia while managing other stra- 
tegic requirements. 

Defense Organization 

In 1990 the armed forces consisted of the Yugoslav People's Army 
(YPA) and the Territorial Defense Forces (TDF) (see fig. 16). The 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 



















Source: Based on information from "Defense School: The Yugoslav Armed Forces — Bulwark 
of Our Defense," Front [Belgrade], November 28, 1980, in Joint Publications 
Research Service, Translations on East Europe, February 4, 1981. 

Figure 16. Organization of the Armed Forces, 1990 

professional YPA in turn included three service branches: the army, 
the air force and air defense, and the navy. The TDF was a large 
militia force with local units throughout the country. The passing 
of virtually the entire Partisan generation, beginning with the death 
of Tito in 1980, removed a major source of inspiration from the 
Yugoslav military establishment. In 1990 the leadership abilities 
of the younger officers, who had experienced neither combat nor 
invasion, remained untested and largely unknown. 

Government Organization for Defense 

A major issue in the government's organization for defense con- 
cerned the position of supreme commander of the armed forces. 


National Security 

From 1941 until his death in 1980, Tito was supreme commander. 
He achieved legendary stature as a military leader because of his role 
in directing the wartime Partisans. After Tito's death, no political lead- 
er carried the same respect and authority with military commanders. 

Since 1980 the powers of the supreme commander have been dis- 
persed within the State Presidency. Article 283 of the Constitution 
gave the Federal Assembly (Skupstina) power to declare war and peace 
and to ratify military agreements and treaties. However, the State 
Presidency had direct command of the armed forces. The State 
Presidency was authorized to make general plans and preparations 
for defense, to declare that an imminent danger of war existed, to 
order mobilization, and to declare war in the event that the Federal 
Assembly could not meet. The State Presidency appointed, promot- 
ed, and relieved general officers. Despite these formal powers, 
however, in 1990 the State Presidency was not deemed likely to ex- 
ercise immediate control over the armed forces. Because of its lack 
of military experience and expertise, the State Presidency likely would 
approve responses to crises and decisions on strategic issues that were 
proposed at lower levels. Because of its collective nature and annual 
rotation, the State Presidency could not replicate Tito's role as an 
actual supreme commander (see State Presidency, ch. 4). As provided 
in Article 316 of the Constitution, it delegated most of its command 
responsibilities and administrative duties to the Council for Nation- 
al Defense and the Secretariat for National Defense. 

Established before Tito's death, the Council for National Defense 
was the highest functional link between the State Presidency, LCY 
leadership, civilian government, and professional military. The council 
was headed by the president of the State Presidency, according to 
Article 326 of the Constitution. However, the Constitution did not 
elaborate on its composition or the exact scope of its work. During 
most of the 1980s, the eleven-member body included six army generals 
(among them the secretary for national defense and the chief of the 
YPA General Staff) and five officials of the government and LCY. 
The council reviewed national defense issues presented by the secre- 
tary and his subordinates. Its decisions were subject to final approval 
by the State Presidency. 

The Secretariat for National Defense organized and supervised the 
armed forces on a day-to-day basis. The secretary for national defense 
was always a lieutenant general or admiral who was also a member 
of the Council for National Defense. National defense was the most 
highly centralized federal secretariat. 

The secretary for national defense exercised full operational con- 
trol over the armed forces and was, for all practical purposes, supreme 
commander. He could issue military orders and instructions on behalf 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

of the State Presidency. The importance of this position increased 
after the death of Tito. The office conferred far greater command 
authority and administrative autonomy than did its counterparts 
in other East European communist countries. 

Following TND doctrine, the secretary for national defense 
planned operations on Yugoslav territory and was responsible for 
the structure, deployment, training, and equipping of the armed 
forces. All YPA and TDF commanders reported to the secretary 
for national defense. The three military services each had an as- 
sistant secretary to manage their administrative affairs. The assis- 
tant secretaries were responsible for budgets, military construction, 
and regulations. They were also ex officio deputy chiefs of the YPA 
General Staff. 

As principal deputy to the secretary for national defense, the chief 
of the YPA General Staff used the directorates of the defense es- 
tablishment to carry out a variety of assigned administrative duties 
(see fig. 17). In the 1980s, service as chief of staff was apparently 
a prerequisite for promotion to secretary for national defense. 

The Council for Territorial Defense was established in 1980 as 
part of the Secretariat for National Defense. After the TDF was 
established in 1968, tensions arose between the regular YPA and 
the militia-style TDF. At that time, the TDF enjoyed high nation- 
al prestige. Tito may have viewed the TDF as a hedge against the 
possible political ambitions of the professional military. During the 
Croatian nationalist disturbances of 1969-71, national leaders feared 
that Croatian TDF units would become the basis of an indepen- 
dent Croatian army. Formation of the Council for Territorial 
Defense effectively brought the TDF under direct control of the 
secretary for national defense and the YPA. The council included 
representatives of the secretary for national defense and those of 
TDF commanders in the republics and provinces. It advised the 
federal secretary on the organization, training, and requirements 
of TDF units. 

The executive committees of the republics and provinces also 
had secretaries for national defense, who retained some formal 
responsibilities. Article 239 of the Constitution required republics, 
provinces, and communes to organize national defense, territorial 
defense, civil defense, and internal security measures in their respec- 
tive jurisdictions. Commissions for TND and social self-protection 
existed for this purpose in the local government and LCY organs. 
They had little authority for this purpose, however, beyond coor- 
dinating mobilization and providing logistical support for the armed 


National Security 

The Military and the Party 

In 1990 more than 100,000 YPA soldiers, airmen, and sailors 
were members of the LCY and formed party cells in the military. 
Because party membership was a criterion for officer status, vir- 
tually all officers were LCY members. Despite this, LCY control 
over the YPA was relatively loose. In fact, the large number of 
military personnel in the LCY made the YPA a powerful constit- 
uency with interests claiming full party attention. 

As in most communist states, military representation in the party 
leadership was significant in the 1980s. The LCY committee in 
the YPA was virtually a military wing of the party. The president 
of the committee, always a general, was likely eventually to be- 
come federal secretary for national defense. The committee held 
party conferences to elect delegates to represent the YPA at LCY 
party congresses. YPA party conferences were similar to the regional 
conferences that elected republic and province delegates to LCY 
party congresses. The YPA also elected its president, secretary, 
and fifty party committee members. YPA delegates elected to the 
Thirteenth Party Congress in 1986 included primarily generals and 
other officers, but some noncommissioned officers, soldiers, civilian 
YPA employees, and higher military school cadets also participated. 

The LCY committee in the YPA elected fourteen officers to serve 
on the LCY Central Committee in 1986. Other officers were elected 
to the Central Committee as representatives of the party in the 
republics and provinces. By 1986, having steadily increased since 
the 1970s, the percentage of military leaders in the Central Com- 
mittee was greater than the percentage of military personnel in the 
total population. In Central Committee representation, the YPA 
allotment almost equaled that of the republics and did equal that 
of the provinces. At various times, the federal secretary for national 
defense has been a member of the Presidium of the LCY Central 

Tito controlled the YPA by exercising his tremendous personal 
authority and purging the ranks occasionally, while allowing con- 
siderable professional autonomy. Many YPA leaders were loyal 
Tito compatriots from the Partisan years, although their numbers 
were declining noticeably by the late 1980s. Even in retirement, 
many of this group remained politically active within the Federa- 
tion of Associations of Veterans of the National Liberation War 
(Savez udruzenja boraca Narodno-oslobodilaCkog rata — SUBNOR; 
see Veterans' Association, ch. 4). 

Military influence in the political system increased steadily after 
the early 1970s. The military earned its influence by stabilizing 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 
























Source: Based on information from Milan N. Vego, "The Yugoslav Ground Forces-. A 
Look at the Past and the Present," Military Review, 60, November 1980, 21; and 
Marko Milivojevic, "The Yugoslav People's Army," Armed Forces, 6, 1987, 19. 

Figure 17. Command and Control of the Armed Forces, 1990 

Yugoslavia during critical periods of internal tension. In 1979 its 
high political profile obligated the YPA to issue a formal disavow- 
al of any intention to assume power after Tito's death. In the 1980s, 
the constant speculation about the political role of the YPA was 
due less to the political ambitions of Yugoslav generals than to the 
many social, economic, and political crises afflicting the state. On 
several occasions, military leaders felt compelled to warn that the 
YPA would not allow disunity to cause the dissolution of the Yu- 
goslav state. 

The possibility of a "Polish" situation was openly discussed; this 
term referred to General Wojciech Jaruzelski's 1981 imposition of 
martial law and communist military dictatorship during a political 


National Security 

crisis in Poland. Were the LCY and civilian government unable 
to solve long-standing problems, the YPA might be seen as the last 
effective, cohesive force in Yugoslavia, intervening in politics to 
ensure the survival of the state. A military coup against the LCY 
was considered unlikely, however, because the YPA was too well 
integrated into the LCY and the process of government. The in- 
terests of the two organizations were more parallel than contradic- 
tory. The YPA was, to an extent, the party in uniform. If it acted 
to rescue party rule, it would actually be demonstrating LCY im- 
potence and further undermining LCY legitimacy. 

Armed Services 

In 1990 the YPA consisted of the army, air force, and navy. The 
armed services were organized into four military regions, includ- 
ing the Split Naval Region. The regions were further divided into 
districts that were responsible for administrative tasks such as draft 
registration, mobilization, and construction and maintenance of 
military facilities. Of the YPA's more than 180,000 soldiers, air- 
men, and sailors, nearly 100,000 were conscripts. 


The army led the armed services in personnel. In 1990 the army 
had 140,000 active-duty soldiers (including 90,000 conscripts) and 
could mobilize nearly 450,000 trained reservists in wartime. The 
army comprised several major service branches, including infan- 
try, armor, artillery, and air defense, and smaller support branches, 
such as the signal, engineering, and chemical defense corps. 

The army was organized into three military regions and ten army 
corps headquarters. The military regions and corps headquarters 
were responsible for forces and operations in three strategic areas: 
Slovenia and northern Croatia; eastern Croatia, Vqjvodina, and 
Serbia; and Kosovo and Macedonia. In 1990 the army had nearly 
completed a major overhaul of its basic force structure. It elimi- 
nated its old divisional infantry organization and established the 
brigade as the largest operational unit. The army converted ten 
of twelve infantry divisions into twenty-nine tank, mechanized, and 
mountain infantry brigades with integral artillery, air defense, and 
antitank regiments. One airborne brigade was also organized be- 
fore 1990. The shift to brigade-level organization provided great- 
er operational flexibility, maneuverability, and tactical initiative, 
and it reduced the possibility that large army units would be de- 
stroyed in set-piece engagements with an aggressor. The change 
created many senior field command positions that would develop 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

relatively young and talented officers. The brigade structure also 
was more appropriate at a time of declining manpower. 

Tank brigades comprised two or three battalions. They operat- 
ed about 750 Soviet T-54 and T-55 tanks, 290 Yugoslav M-84 
tanks, and some United States-made M-47 tanks. The LCY held 
about 550 Soviet T-34 and United States-produced M-4 tanks in 
storage as reserves. The army's tanks were in many respects its 
most obsolete forces. The T-54/-55 was a frontline model during 
the 1960s. The M-47, T-34, and M-4 were tanks of World War 
II vintage and the early postwar era. Domestic production of the 
M-84 (basically a version of the Soviet T-72 built under license 
in Yugoslavia) was slowly providing the army with a late 1970s 
and 1980s model (see Arms Procurement, this ch.). 

Mechanized infantry brigades lacked sufficient mechanization. 
In 1990 fewer than 1,000 armored combat vehicles and personnel 
carriers served almost 50,000 troops in frondine infantry units. Far 
fewer than one-half of all brigades were substantially mechanized. 
The majority of mechanized units were concentrated in eastern 
Croatia, Vojvodina, and Serbia along what would be the main axis 
of a Warsaw Pact invasion of Yugoslavia. 

The army had over 400 M-980 armored combat vehicles and 
300 M-60P armored personnel carriers produced domestically. The 
infantry also operated more than 200 Soviet-made BTR-152, 
BTR-40, and BTR-50 armored personnel carriers, which had been 
purchased in the 1960s and 1970s. It had 100 M-3A1 half-tracked 
personnel carriers produced by the United States and a small 
number of new Romanian TAB-72 armored personnel carriers. 
Armored reconnaissance vehicles included a few older Soviet 
BTR-40s, newer BRDM-2 models, and domestic BOV and M-8 

Artillery regiments were well equipped with Soviet, United 
States, and domestic systems. Soviet artillery in these units con- 
sisted of approximately 1,000 towed 122mm howitzers, 130mm 
guns, 152mm gun/howitzers, and 155mm howitzers. There were 
about 700 older United States 105mm and 155mm towed guns and 
domestically produced models such as the M-65 in the artillery 
regiments. Towed pieces were very important for operations in the 
country's mountainous terrain. Artillery units operated Soviet 
100mm and 122mm and Yugoslav-produced 105mm M-7 self- 
propelled guns. Those units had over 6,000 82mm and 120mm 
mortars, including a self-propelled 82mm mortar mounted on an 
M-60PB variant of the standard armored personnel carrier. 

Artillery units operated several batdefield missile systems, inclu- 
ding 160 128mm YMRL-32 and M-63 multiple-rocket launchers. 


Soldiers of the Yugoslav People's Army in field exercise 
Courtesy Embassy of Yugoslavia, Washington 

The arsenal included four launchers for Soviet FROG- 7 surface- 
to-surface missiles. First fielded in 1967, the unguided FROG-7 
had a range of 100 kilometers. 

Antitank regiments had towed antitank guns, recoilless rifles, 
and Soviet antitank guided missiles. Antitank guns included 75mm, 
90mm, and 100mm models. They were Soviet produced with the 
exception of the 90mm M-63B2, which was manufactured domes- 
tically. The recoilless rifles were manufactured domestically and 
included 57mm, 82mm, and 105mm models. Two self-propelled 
82mm recoilless rifles could be mounted on an M-60PB armored 
personnel carrier. Antitank guided missiles were the Soviet AT-1 
and AT-3. They were used in both antitank and infantry units, 
but because of their early vintage, effectiveness against advanced 
armor was uncertain. The four-wheeled BOV-1 armored recon- 
naissance vehicle could be equipped with six AT-3 launchers to 
serve as a highly mobile antitank platform. 

Larger army units had considerable tactical air defense assets, 
designed to defend major troop concentrations against enemy air 
strikes. The ground forces had four surface-to-air missile, regiments 
and eleven antiaircraft artillery regiments. The former operated 
Soviet SA-6 mobile medium-range surface-to-air missiles as well 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

as large numbers of shorter-range portable SA-7 and vehicle- 
mounted SA-9 missiles. Short-range systems also were employed 
in infantry units. 

Yugoslav antiaircraft artillery regiments operated over 5,000 
guns. Self-propelled gun systems included the Soviet-made 57mm 
dual ZSU-57-2 gun systems and the domestically produced triple 
20mm BOV-3 and dual 30mm BOV-30. Large numbers of towed 
antiaircraft guns of many calibers were in the inventory. Of both 
domestic and foreign origin, they included pieces purchased from 
the United States, Czechoslovakia, Switzerland, and Sweden. 

In general, the army's major deficiencies were its lack of ade- 
quate firepower and mobility. Infantry units were insufficiently 
mechanized to maneuver on a modern battlefield, and tank forces 
were largely outdated. Using equipment from the Soviet Union, 
the United States, and other countries, the army had serious logisti- 
cal problems, including irregular ammunition supply and main- 
tainance of many nonstandard weapons systems. The army lacked 
sufficient fire support from the air force, although by 1990 the lat- 
ter was acquiring additional ground attack aircraft and helicop- 
ters to perform this mission. The army emphasized developing or 
obtaining more effective vehicle-mounted and portable antitank 
guided missiles and antiaircraft missiles. A shortage was evident 
in advanced target designation systems, including infrared sights 
and laser range finders. 

Air Force 

In 1990 the air force included more than 32,000 personnel; 
because of the professional and technical requirements of the service, 
fewer than 4,000 were conscripts. The air force operated over 400 
combat aircraft and 200 armed helicopters. It was responsible for 
transport, reconnaissance, and rotary -wing aircraft as well as the 
national air defense system. The primary air force missions were 
to contest enemy efforts to establish air superiority over Yugosla- 
via and to support the defensive operations of the army and navy. 
Most aircraft and missiles were produced domestically or supplied 
by the Soviet Union. 

The air force had twelve squadrons of domestically produced 
ground attack fighters. The ground attack squadrons provided close 
air support to army operations. They were equipped with 165 new 
Orao-2, Super Galeb and Jastreb, and older P-2 Kraguj fighters. 
In 1990 gradual procurement of more Orao-2 fighters was facilitat- 
ing replacement by the older fighters in ground attack squadrons. 
Many ground attack fighters were armed with AGM-65 Maver- 
ick air-to-surface missiles purchased from the United States. Others 


National Security 

were armed with Soviet AS- 7 and AS-9 missiles. The air force 
also had seventy armed Mi-8 helicopter gunships to provide 
added mobility and fire support for small ground units. A large 
number of reconnaissance aircraft were available to support army 
operations. Four squadrons of seventy Galeb, Jastreb, and Orao-1 
fighters were configured for reconnaissance missions. 

The air force provided limited transport for the army. It had 
two squadrons with over thirty Soviet-made Yak-40, An- 12, and 
An-26 transport aircraft. It had seven helicopter transport squad- 
rons with Soviet Mi-8 and domestic Partisan helicopters. In 1990 
the air force transport aircraft and helicopters could transport only 
part of the men and equipment of the army's airborne brigade. 

The air force had a limited role in supporting the navy in coastal 
defense operations. It operated one squadron of Soviet-made Ka-25 
and Ka-28 antisubmarine warfare helicopters and two squadrons 
of Mi-8 and Partisan transport helicopters in support of navy 

The air force conducted a large pilot training program with almost 
200 Galeb, Jastreb, and UTVA-75/-76 aircraft. The propeller- 
driven UTVA trainers had underwing pylons capable of carrying 
light weapons loads. A new UTVA Lasta trainer was under de- 
velopment in 1990. After practicing instrument and night flying, 
gunnery, bombing, rocket firing, and aerial maneuvers in the Lasta, 
student pilots progressed to the Super Galeb. Twenty Partisan 
helicopters were used for pilot training. 

The air force had nine squadrons of 130 Soviet-made MiG-21 
interceptors for air defense. First produced in the late 1950s, the 
MiG-21 was largely obsolete in 1990 and represented a potential 
weakness in Yugoslavia's air defense. The MiG-21s were armed 
with Soviet AA-2 air-to-air missiles of a similar vintage and some 
more modern AA-8 missiles as well as twin 30mm cannons. The 
air force acquired one squadron of new Soviet MiG-29 intercep- 
tors in 1989, possibly as an initial step toward modernizing its in- 
terceptor squadrons. One Yugoslav aircraft manufacturer also was 
developing a new domestic multirole fighter to replace the MiG-2 1 . 

The air force controlled additional capable ground-based air 
defense forces, which were upgraded in the mid-1970s. They in- 
cluded eight battalions of Soviet SA-2 surface-to-air missiles; six 
battalions of more modern SA-3 missiles; fifteen regiments of an- 
tiaircraft artillery; and a network of early warning radars and com- 
mand, control, and communications equipment dispersed at sites 
around the country. The best-defended sites were those with stra- 
tegic military value, including government army headquarters, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

industrial infrastructure, major population centers, ports, and 


In 1990 the navy had 10,000 sailors (4,400 conscripts), includ- 
ing 2,300 in twenty-five coastal artillery batteries and 900 marines 
in one light naval infantry brigade. This was essentially a coastal 
defense force with the mission of preventing enemy landings along 
the country's rugged 1,500-kilometer shoreline or coastal islands 
and of contesting an enemy blockade or control of the strategic Strait 
of Otranto. Its capabilities were limited by a lack of operational 
time at sea and infrequent live-fire exercises. 

Minor surface combatants operated by the navy included near- 
ly eighty frigates, corvettes, submarines, minesweepers, and mis- 
sile, torpedo, and patrol boats in the Adriatic Fleet. The entire coast 
of Yugoslavia was part of the naval region headquartered at Split. 
The naval region was divided into three smaller naval districts and 
a riverine flotilla with major bases located at Split, Sibenik, Pula, 
Plo£e, and Kotor on the Adriatic and Novi Sad on the Danube. 
The fleet was organized into missile, torpedo, and patrol boat 
brigades, a submarine division, and minesweeper flotillas. The 
naval order of batde included four frigates, three corvettes, five 
patrol submarines, twenty-eight minesweepers, and fifty-eight mis- 
sile, torpedo, and patrol boats. One antisubmarine warfare helicop- 
ter squadron was based at Divulje on the Adriatic for coastal 
operations. It employed Soviet Ka-25, Ka-28, and Mi-8 helicop- 
ters and domestic Partisan helicopters. Some air force fighter and 
reconnaissance squadrons supported naval operations. 

During World War II, the Partisans operated many small boats 
in raids harassing Italian convoys in the Adriatic Sea. After the 
war, the navy operated numerous German and Italian submarines, 
destroyers, minesweepers, and tank-landing craft captured during 
the war or received as war reparations. The United States provid- 
ed eight torpedo boats in the late 1940s, but most of those units 
were soon obsolete. The navy was upgraded in the 1960s when 
it acquired ten Osa-I class missile boats and four Shershen-class 
torpedo boats from the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union granted 
a license to build eleven additional Shershen units in Yugoslav ship- 
yards developed for this purpose. 

In 1980 and 1982, the navy took delivery of two Soviet Koni- 
class frigates. In 1988 it completed two additional units under 
license. The Koni frigates were armed with four Soviet SS-N-2B 
surface-to-surface missile launchers, twin SA-N-4 surface-to-air 
missiles, and antisubmarine rocket launchers. The Yugoslav navy 


Officer inspecting paratrooper equipment 
Courtesy Embassy of Yugoslavia, Washington 

developed its own submarine-building capability during the 1960s. 
In 1990 the main combat units of the submarine service were three 
Heroj-class patrol submarines armed with 533mm torpedoes. Two 
smaller Sava-class units entered service in the late 1970s. Two 
Sutjeska-class submarines had been relegated mainly to training 
missions by 1990. At that time, the navy had apparently shifted 
to construction of versatile midget submarines. Four Una-class 
midgets and four Mala-class swimmer delivery vehicles were in ser- 
vice in the late 1980s. They were built for use by underwater demo- 
lition teams and special forces. The Una-class boats carried five 
crewmen, eight combat swimmers, four Mala vehicles, and lim- 
pet mines. The Mala vehicles in turn carried two swimmers and 
250 kilograms of mines. 

The navy operated ten Osa I-class and six KonCar-class missile 
boats. The Osa I boats were armed with four SS-N-2A surface- 
to-surface missile launchers. In 1990 domestic Kobra boats were 
scheduled to begin replacing the Osa I boats. The Kobra was to 
be armed with four SS-N-2C launchers or eight Swedish RBS-15 
antiship missile launchers. Armed with two SS-N-2B launchers, 
the Koncar-class boats were modeled after the Swedish Spica class. 
The navy also operated fifteen Shershen-class torpedo boats and 
eleven Yugoslav-built units. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Patrol boats were operated primarily for antisubmarine warfare. 
The inventory included three Mornar-class corvettes with antisub- 
marine rocket launchers and depth charges. The Mornar class was 
based on a French design from the mid-1950s. Seventeen Mirna 
inshore patrol boats and thirteen older Kraljevica submarine chasers 
also were available. 

The navy's mine warfare and countermeasures capabilities were 
considered adequate in 1990. It operated four Vukov Klanac-class 
coastal minehunters built on a French design, four British Ham- 
class inshore minesweepers, and six 1 17-class inshore minesweep- 
ers built in domestic shipyards. Larger numbers of older and less 
capable minesweepers were mainly used in riverine operations. 
Other older units were used as dedicated minelayers. 

The navy used amphibious landing craft in support of army oper- 
ations in the area of the Danube, Sava, and Drava rivers. They 
included both tank and assault landing craft. In 1990 there were 
four 501-class, ten 21 1-class, and twenty-five 601-class landing craft 
in service. Most of them were also capable of laying mines in rivers 
and coastal areas. 

The coastal artillery batteries had both surface-to-surface mis- 
siles and guns. They operated the Soviet-designed SS-C-3 and a 
truck-mounted, Yugoslav-produced Brom antiship missile. The lat- 
ter was essentially a Yugoslav variant of the Soviet SS-N-2. Coastal 
guns included over 400 88mm, 122mm, 130mm, and 152mm ar- 
tillery pieces obtained from the Soviet Union, the United States, 
Germany (immediately after World War II), and Yugoslav 

Territorial Defense Forces 

The Territorial Defense Forces (TDF) were formed in 1 968 as 
an integral part of the TND doctrine (see Military Doctrine, this 
ch.). TDF units were a vehicle for mobilizing able-bodied civilian 
males and females to participate in national defense. Between 1 
million and 3 million Yugoslavs between the ages of fifteen and 
sixty-five would fight under TDF command as irregular or guer- 
rilla forces in wartime. In peacetime, however, about 860,000 TDF 
troops were involved in training and other activities. 

As originally formed, the TDF was highly decentralized and in- 
dependent. TDF units were organized and funded by the party 
and governments in the republics, provinces, and communes. The 
units were commanded by TDF commanders, but they were 
responsible to both regional LCY leadership and the nearest YPA 
command. The formation of TDF units strained the budget, per- 
sonnel, logistics, and training resources of the YPA without giving 


Member of Territorial Defense Forces 
Courtesy Embassy of Yugoslavia, Washington 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

it direct control over them. Because of its high initial priority, the 
TDF also became a rival of sorts and detracted from the status and 
prestige of the YPA. 

Tension between the TDF and the YPA persisted throughout 
the 1970s. The possibility that one republic might form its TDF 
units into an independent army capable of opposing the YPA 
brought gradual centralization of the TDF. The process culminated 
in the establishment of the Council for Territorial Defense under 
the control of the secretary for national defense in 1980 (see Govern- 
ment Organization for Defense, this ch.). 

Additional changes made republic and province TDF com- 
manders direcdy responsible to the chief of the YPA General Staff. 
Active-duty and reserve YPA officers assumed command of TDF 
units throughout the country. It became increasingly apparent that 
the YPA would direct TDF units in combat, except in enemy- 
controlled areas or in case of a disruption in the chain of command. 

Despite losing control over their TDF organizations, the republics 
and provinces continued to bear the financial burden of support- 
ing them. Those jurisdictions were still required to provide infra- 
structure and logistical support to TDF units operating on their 
territory. During the 1980s, the cost of the TDF was estimated at 
approximately 1 percent of GNP annually. 

The TDF concept focused on small, lightly armed infantry units 
fighting defensive actions on familiar local terrain. The typical unit 
was a company- sized detachment organized by more than 2,000 
communes, neighborhood factories, and other enterprises. These 
units would fight in their home areas, maintaining local defense 
production essential to the overall war effort. The TDF also in- 
cluded some larger, more heavily equipped units with wider oper- 
ational responsibilities. TDF battalions and regiments operated in 
regional areas with older artillery and antiaircraft guns and some 
obsolete armored vehicles. Using their mobility and tactical initia- 
tive, these units would attempt to alleviate the pressure of enemy 
armored columns, air strikes, and air assaults on smaller TDF units. 

In coastal regions, TDF units had naval missions. They operat- 
ed some obsolete gunboats in support of navy operations. They 
were organized to defend strategic coastal areas and navai facili- 
ties against enemy amphibious landings and raids. They also trained 
some divers for use in sabotage and other special operations. 

The TDF was helped by the fact that most of its male citizen- 
soldiers were onetime YPA conscripts who had completed their term 
of compulsory military service. But TDF recruitment was some- 
what limited by the YPA desire to include as many recendy released 


National Security 

conscripts as possible in its reserve. Other sources of TDF man- 
power lacked prior military service and required extensive basic 

Military Manpower 

Articles 172 and 241 of the Constitution of 1974 declare mili- 
tary service and defense of the country to be the supreme duty and 
honor of every citizen. In 1990 more than 4 million Yugoslavs were 
in the YPA, the reserve, the TDF, or civil defense. 

The Yugoslav people generally held favorable opinions of mili- 
tary personnel because of the identification with the Partisans who 
liberated the country in World War II. However, memories of Par- 
tisan activities had dimmed noticeably by 1990. By that time, the 
popularity and prestige of the YPA had begun to diminish, and 
military careers had grown less attractive, even among the most 
patriotic parts of society. 

The Military and Society 

For most of the 1980s, the YPA was considered the strongest 
unifying institution in the country. The military played a fundamen- 
tal role in preventing the dissolution of the federal state after the 
death of Tito and the dramatic rise of ethnic tensions in the 1980s. 
By 1990, however, serious problems had developed in YPA ranks 
and in its relationship to society as a whole. 

The YPA remained very popular in Serbia in the 1980s. A former 
secretary for national defense served as president of Serbia in 1984, 
and a retired chief of the YPA General Staff held that position in 
1988. The predominantly Serbian leadership of the YPA made high- 
profile appeals for national unity and public order. To non-Serbs, 
however, these calls seemed to be demands for greater centralism 
to the detriment of the federal system. 

The YPA faced growing criticism and antimilitary attitudes from 
civilians of other nationalities. Although the organization remained 
unified, divisive tensions paralleled Yugoslavia's growing social 
problems. Nationalist movements in several regions of the coun- 
try posed the most immediate threat: to many observers, ethnic 
strife complicated the YPA missions of defending against external 
threats and suppressing internal ones. Beginning in the mid-1980s, 
the civilian press, especially in Slovenia, subjected the military to 
unprecedented criticism and scrutiny. It called the YPA an un- 
democratic institution that favored Serbs over other nationalities. 
Investigative reports described the use of military labor to build 
expensive villas for the LCY and YPA leadership. The press ques- 
tioned the use of military force in situations of internal unrest. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Slovene reporters revealed Yugoslavia's role as an intermediary 
in Swedish arms sales to Libya and Iraq (see Arms Sales, this ch.). 
The controversial story led to a military investigation of the reporters 
and an effort to silence public criticism of the YPA (see Courts, 
Detention, and Punishment, this ch.). In 1988 a former secretary 
for national defense asserted that hostile elements were tarnishing 
the military's reputation and stirring ethnic unrest among mili- 
tary personnel. Alleged uprisings plotted by ethnic Albanians in 
the YPA were mentioned prominently in his speech. He claimed 
that attacks on the YPA destabilized the country's constitutional 
order by undermining one of its most important institutions. 

In the 1980s, physical attacks on YPA personnel increased. In 
1985 aione, thirty attacks were reported. Nineteen soldiers were 
attacked during mass demonstrations protesting the arrests of the 
journalists who had publicized the arms deal with Libya and Iraq. 
While asserting that most attacks were motivated by nationalists 
and separatists, the military did not reveal that the majority of in- 
cidents involved recent, non-Serbian YPA conscripts. For exam- 
ple, in 1987 an ethnic Albanian conscript murdered four soldiers 
in a federal army garrison in Serbia in what may have been an 
ethnically motivated incident. 

As in all Yugoslav institutions, the delicacy of the ethnic balance 
in the YPA had a serious impact on the military's effectiveness. 
Article 242 of the Coi'Stitution requires that the senior YPA com- 
mand and officer corps reflect proportional representation of all 
nations and nationalities. However, the proportion of Serbs in the 
YPA was higher than that in the total population. In 1983 Serbs 
made up more than 57 percent of the YPA officer corps. And an 
even higher percentage of Serbs reportedly occupied the high com- 
mand positions. Virtually every former secretary for national 
defense or chief of the YPA General Staff was a Serb. Among the 
other nationalities, Montenegrins had a strong military tradition 
and close ties to Serbia. They made up over 10 percent of the offi- 
cer corps but only 3 percent of the total population. Croats and 
Slovenes were the most seriously underrepresented nationalities 
in the YPA officer corps. They made up only 15 and 5 percent, 
respectively, of all officers and 20 and 8 percent, respectively, of 
the civilian population. Croats met some discrimination in the YPA 
because of lingering doubts about theiv loyalty to the Yugoslav 
state. Muslims, Albanians, Macedonians, and Hungarians con- 
stituted a small fraction of the officer corps. Serbian officers and non- 
commissioned officers commanded YPA forces that included mosdy 
non-Serbian soldiers. Serbian officers tended to have a strong 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

all- Yugoslav outlook, whereas the non-Serbian conscripts they com- 
manded brought with them a strong bias toward their own region. 
Nationalism was particularly intense among the increasing num- 
ber of ethnic Albanian conscripts from Kosovo. 

Every YPA unit included soldiers of each nationality. With the 
exception of the Serbs, conscripts usually were not trained or sta- 
tioned in their home republics or provinces. This practice ensured 
troop loyalty during internal security actions by the army. For ex- 
ample, Macedonian soldiers would likely have fewer reservations 
about using force to restore order among the population of Koso- 
vo than against their fellow Macedonians. 

Because the YPA was assigned the role of maintaining the fed- 
eral Yugoslav state, nationalist friction among members of the 
armed forces was an especially important problem. By 1990 this 
situation raised serious questions as to whether the YPA could con- 
tain ethnic tension in its own ranks, much less the entire country. 
As in other facets of Yugoslav life, Tito's leadership had inspired 
cooperation toward unified military achievement; following his 
death, fundamental ethnic hostilities began to surface. Doubts also 
arose about the dependability of troops from certain nationalities 
in defending Yugoslavia against external attack. In 1990 such doubts 
fell especially on the Croats, ethnic Albanians, and Slovenes be- 
cause of political and economic conditions that had emerged in their 
regions in the 1980s (see Regional Political Issues, ch. 4). 

A series of Croatian demands for military autonomy brought 
forceful suppression of the Croatian separatist movement by Serb- 
dominated YPA forces in 1971 and 1972. The Croats sought 
permission to perform compulsory YPA service in their home 
republic, instead of automatically being assigned elsewhere, and 
some even demanded formation of a separate army in their republic. 
The latter demand, with its implications for Croatian independence, 
prompted YPA intervention to keep the republic in the federal state. 
This crisis demonstrated the extent of the ethnic fault line in the 
YPA. In the decades following the massive Croatian collaboration 
with the Nazis in World War II, Croatian officers and soldiers had 
largely restored the group's reputation for military reliability. But 
the separatist crisis of 1971-72 resuscitated doubts about Croa- 
tian loyalty. In the aftermath of the crisis, many Croatian officers 
who either actively or tacitly supported Croat nationalists were 
purged from the YPA; this purge heightened Croatian hostility 
toward the national military establishment. 

In 1981 similar tensions existed in Kosovo. Ethnic Albanians there 
complained that YPA forces used excessive brutality in suppress- 
ing the massive nationalist uprisings that year. Periodic disturbances 


National Security 

lasted throughout the 1980s (see Kosovo, ch. 4). Setting an ominous 
precedent for the future, the residents of Kosovo actively resisted 
YPA intervention and the semipermanent occupation of their 
province by YPA detachments. In 1987 the YPA held large-scale 
maneuvers in Slovenia. Because the Slovenes had also made seri- 
ous demands for political and economic autonomy in the 1980s, 
those maneuvers seemed a possible prelude to YPA intervention 
in that republic. Some observers feared that, under the weight of 
nationalism, the YPA might eventually degenerate into rival armed 
ethnic militias fighting a civil war. 

Recruitment and Service Obligations 

Conscription was the principal source of soldiers in Yugoslavia. 
All male citizens were subject to conscription, regardless of ethnic 
group. The ethnic breakdown of YPA conscripts closely approxi- 
mated the ethnic composition of the population as a whole. By law, 
twelve months of military service was compulsory. Young men 
registered for conscription on their seventeenth birthday. Usually 
inducted in the spring or fall after their nineteenth birthday, young 
men remained eligible for the draft until age thirty. In 1990 about 
2.8 million males in this age-group were fit for military service, 
out of an estimated national population of 23.5 million. Within 
this group, about 180,000 reached the normal induction age of 
nineteen every year. Between 60 and 70 percent of the 180,000 
were drafted in their first year of eligibility. By law men between 
the ages of eighteen and fifty-five could be drafted in the event of 
war or imminent threat of war. About 5 million males were eligi- 
ble for service under this category. 

Treatment of conscientious objectors was harsh, and no form 
of alternative service was available for those who refused. Article 
214 of the federal criminal code provided for imprisonment for one 
to ten years for avoiding military service. In time of war or im- 
mediate danger of war, the penalty for refusing to serve ranged 
from five years in prison to capital punishment. 

Even after the reduction in the size of the YPA in the late 1980s, 
the ratio of soldiers to civilians remained high. By the late 1980s, 
a new military obligation law had shortened the term of conscrip- 
tion from fifteen to twelve months. Military policy makers did not 
reduce the term of service willingly, but demographic factors had 
left no alternative. 

Young males working abroad reduced the number of potential 
conscripts for the YPA, although this problem was less acute in 
the 1980s than in the 1970s. A limited number of exemptions were 
based on physical disability or family hardship. Students enrolled 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

in or preparing to enter a university program also received defer- 
ments. University graduates were unlikely to serve a full year in 
the military. Many fulfilled their service requirement by receiv- 
ing reserve officer commissions upon graduation from a universi- 
ty. Yugoslav sources reported that 20,000 reserve officers were 
commissioned annually through the TDN and university training 

Although not ordinarily subject to conscription, women served 
in the military in several capacities. Beginning in 1983, women 
were allowed to volunteer for noncombat duty as communications, 
medical, and clerical personnel. They also served in the reserves 
and could be drafted into the YPA during war or imminent threat 
of war, upon a special order of the secretary for national defense. 
A large percentage of TDF personnel were women. 

Between 1987 and 1990, financial and demographic factors 
gradually reduced the number of YPA personnel from 266,000 to 
180,000. The economic rationale was apparent: in a time of ex- 
treme national economic crisis and lessening international tension, 
the military was a natural target for budget cutting. At the same 
time, by 1990 Yugoslavia's population growth was relatively slow 
at 0.6 percent annually. Because the ethnic Albanians of Kosovo 
accounted for most of this small increase, maintaining force strength 
in the YPA would mean inducting higher percentages of this poten- 
tially disruptive segment of the population — a course not favored 
by Yugoslav military policy makers in the late 1980s. 

Noncommissioned officers (NCOs) were generally selected from 
two sources. Commanders could recommend that soldiers attend 
an NCO school upon completing basic training. Other qualified 
youths could apply to an NCO school directly from civilian life. 
NCO candidates graduated with the rank of sergeant. They signed 
up for three- to nine-year tours of duty. 

Commissioned officers were trained primarily in higher military 
schools run by the three service branches (see Military Training 
and Education, this ch.). Particularly well-qualified NCOs who 
passed the officer examination could also receive commissions. 
Civilians with technical specialties such as engineering or medi- 
cine could be commissioned directly from civilian life. 

Retirement in the YPA was mandatory after forty years of serv- 
ice or at age sixty, except for those in the general officer ranks. 
Service in the reserves began on completion of 'active duty. Con- 
scripts and NCOs were obligated until age fifty-five, and warrant 
officers and commissioned officers were obligated until age sixty. 
Women served in the reserves until age fifty. NCOs could enter 
the reserves as junior (second) lieutenants after completing a reserve 


Notional Security 

officer course. During war or imminent threat of war, the secre- 
tary for national defense could extend reserve service obligations. 
Promotion and other advancement generally came more slowly in 
the reserves than in the active service. 

Organized civil defense was another form of citizen participa- 
tion within the national defense establishment. Beginning in the 
late 1960s, the emphasis on the TDF and local defense drained per- 
sonnel from the extensive civil defense and urban evacuation pro- 
gram already in existence. Nonetheless, in 1989 civil defense units 
included about 2 million adults not included in the YPA, its reserve, 
or the TDF. The Council for Civil Defense was a joint military 
and civilian body within the Secretariat for National Defense. It 
brought representatives of the secretary for national defense together 
with military and government officials from each republic or 
province. The former provided assistance and advice to the latter 
as they formed civil defense organizations at every level of govern- 
ment in the republic or province. 

Civil defense originally was directed at planning for the mass 
evacuation of large cities and defense against atomic, biological, 
or chemical (ABC) attack. It later acquired other major wartime 
reconstruction and reconstitution responsibilities, such as fire fight- 
ing, provision of public health, sanitation, emergency shelters, 
evacuation, and civil engineering. Civil defense units also were in- 
volved in damage recovery from natural or man-made disasters 
and other national emergency situations. 

Military Training and Education 

In 1990 about one-half of all conscripts came from rural back- 
grounds. They tended to adapt well to the rigors of military life. 
Many conscripts lacked significant technical training or mechani- 
cal experience prior to entering military service. This factor, com- 
bined with a relatively short time of service, impeded training 
beyond basic military skills. Article 243 of the 1974 Constitution 
guaranteed the equality of all national languages in the armed 
forces. However, that article also stated that a single, unspecified 
language could be used for military training and command. In prac- 
tice, Serbo-Croatian was the only language used in the armed forces. 

Conscription was instituted at the time of maximum Soviet threat 
in 1948. Many seventeen-year-olds received premilitary training 
prior to induction. This training was intended to give youths some 
basic military knowledge so that they could enter the YPA pre- 
pared to fight. In 1990 reserve NCOs and officers still conducted 
regular premilitary drills in intermediate schools. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Basic YPA training was conducted in special training units. Based 
on the TND doctrine, training covered both conventional military 
operations and unconventional guerrilla warfare tactics developed 
by the wartime Partisans. Basic training included twenty weeks 
of individual physical conditioning, military drill and discipline, 
weapons familiarization and range firing, political indoctrination, 
and squad and platoon tactical exercises. Soldiers participated in 
more advanced training in the units to which they were perma- 
nently assigned at the end of basic training. They were involved 
in larger unit maneuvers and exercises up to the brigade level. Some 
troops received specialist training in their permanent units, while 
others were sent to technical schools. 

Economic stringency limited expenditures on realistic live-fire 
exercises, large-scale maneuvers, and extensive education. The YPA 
also was required to supply conscript labor for many large-scale 
civilian construction projects. YPA units and military engineers 
worked on roads, bridges, railroads, tunnels, coal mines, and water 
supply systems. These activities detracted from conventional mili- 
tary training time. 

Officer Education 

Several higher military schools served as the main training source 
for officers of the various service branches. Secondary-school stu- 
dents and a certain number of qualified active-duty NCOs could 
apply for competitive admission to those institutions. Applicants 
were required to have good "moral-political" qualities, a term 
generally interpreted to mean membership in the Youth League 
of Yugoslavia (the official youth organization sponsored by the 
LCY). By 1990, however, Yugoslav youth showed diminished en- 
thusiasm both for party activity and for a military career; applica- 
tions to higher military schools dropped accordingly. 

Cadets in the military schools normally followed a three- to five- 
year curriculum designed for line officers or for military engineers. 
Each combat arm and technical or administrative branch of the 
YPA had at least one higher military school. Once commissioned 
into active duty, graduates were required to remain in service for 
six to ten years. Military pilots had a fifteen-year obligation. After 
being assigned to a permanent unit, young officers learned most 
of their basic duties on the job. After several years of active ser- 
vice, they were selected for specialist training. Some commissioned 
officers in technical fields such as communications and aviation 
maintenance were sent directly to advanced training programs. Out- 
standing senior captains, majors, and lieutenant colonels were chos- 
en to attend a higher military academy for two years of advanced 


National Security 

study in tactics and operations. Selected colonels attended a one- 
year command-and-staff program. Naval officers below rear ad- 
miral attended similar courses at the Higher Naval Academy in 
Split. In 1990 some Yugoslav officers were selected to attend pres- 
tigious Soviet military academies, which were similar to command- 
and-staff or war colleges in the United States. 

Reserve Training 

Reserve training was limited by law. Reservists were eligible for 
periodic temporary call-up to active duty for training. But reserve 
soldiers were not required to train more than two months in any 
year or more than six months total during their entire reserve ob- 
ligation. Officers were not required to train more than twelve 
months during their obligation. All reservists remained subject to 
periodic training until the last five years of their obligation. They 
were compensated for wages forfeited during temporary active duty. 
Failure to respond to a call-up without a proper waiver was a crimi- 
nal offense prosecuted in military courts. Reservists could be ar- 
rested and tried for crimes or breaches of military discipline while 
in an active-duty status. 

Military Life 

Yugoslavia's socialist self- management system was defended by 
the one institution in the country that did not practice self- 
management (see Socialist Self-Management, ch. 3). It was believed 
that the independence implicit in self-management was contradic- 
tory to the essential military principles of command, subordina- 
tion, and discipline. 

Soldiers received free military housing, meals, and health care, 
plus a small monthly payment for personal expenses. They spent 
a considerable amount of time producing their own food. Larger 
military units raised and slaughtered livestock and grew various 
staple crops. The stipulated average workweek of a YPA soldier 
was forty-two hours; however, training exercises and maneuvers 
could extend that time. Soldiers were entitled to fifteen to twenty- 
one days of regular leave during the active-duty period. Some 
received extra leave privileges for good conduct. Overall, the stan- 
dard of living of the average soldier was below that of his civilian 
counterpart. This was not a serious concern, however, because mili- 
tary service was both mandatory and relatively brief. 

Although they lacked the privileges of self-management, sol- 
diers had a special right to complain to their immediate superiors 
about unsatisfactory working and living conditions. They could ap- 
peal an unfavorable decision to a higher officer within thirty days. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Military law stipulated that regular meetings of military units and 
facilities would discuss housing, health care, and other conditions 
of military life. Like other citizens, soldiers voted for delegates to 
serve in commune, republic or province, and federal assemblies. 
These delegates represented their service post and not their home 

The majority of soldiers came directly to the service from school, 
but if they were employed prior to conscription, they had the right 
to return to their former jobs. Military service brought with it a 
fairly generous disability allowance as well as death benefits to a 
soldier's family. 

Unlike soldiers, officers received sufficient pay and allowances 
to live in better circumstances than their civilian counterparts. 
Officer pay was determined by a combination of factors, includ- 
ing rank, length of service, marital status, and number of depen- 
dents. Officers received generous allowances for travel, family 
separation, cost-of-living differentials, and other hardships. Air 
crews and airborne officers received hazardous duty pay, and med- 
ical doctors, engineers, and technicians with special skills or train- 
ing received extra incentive pay to stay in the service. 

Promotions were awarded rapidly and equitably. Active-duty 
performance was evaluated as either favorable or unfavorable. A 
favorable rating was further classified as adequate, good, outstand- 
ing, or especially outstanding. Officers were rated after one year 
of service and every three years thereafter until the tenth year of 
service. After ten years of service, they were evaluated every four 

Officer benefits were generous. Leave amounted to thirty days 
every year. Officers with more than twenty-five years of active- 
duty service or older than age fifty received an additional ten days 
per year. In most cases, retirement pay was more than fifty per- 
cent of active-duty pay. Nevertheless, inadequate military hous- 
ing was a common problem that lowered morale among officers. 

Ranks, Insignia, and Uniforms 

Ranks in the YPA were updated by the Army Law of 1982. Ac- 
cording to that law, the YPA had five categories of ranks, includ- 
ing general officers, senior officers, junior officers, NCOs, and 
soldiers. The lowest three enlisted ranks wore one, two, and three 
red chevrons, respectively, on a background of olive-green, blue- 
gray, or black — corresponding, respectively, to the ground forces, 
air force, or navy. In the army and air force, the upper enlisted 
ranks wore single thin yellow-gold chevrons with one, two, three, 
and four yellow-gold stars, respectively. The two classes of warrant 


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officer wore two yellow- gold chevrons with one and two gold stars, 

The lowest three navy ranks were indicated by one, two, and 
three red chevrons, respectively. Petty officers second class (roughly 
equivalent to petty officers first class) wore one red chevron and 
one red star. The upper three enlisted ranks wore two, three, and 
four yellow-gold chevrons and one yellow-gold star, respectively. 
Warrant officers wore one broad and one narrow yellow-gold 
chevron and one yellow-gold star, chief warrant officers (warrant 
officers first class) wore a second narrow yellow- gold chevron and 
one yellow- gold star. 

Insignia for commissioned officers were worn on shoulder boards 
in colors corresponding to their service branch: olive-green for the 
army, blue-gray for the air force, and black for the navy. Shoul- 
der boards were piped with single and double yellow-gold braid, 
respectively, for junior and senior officers of the army and air force. 
Shoulder boards of navy officers were not piped. General officers 
of all three services wore shoulder boards piped with twisted gold 

In the army and air force, the four junior officer ranks wore shoul- 
der boards with one, two, three, and four small yellow-gold stars, 
respectively. The shoulder boards of the three senior officer ranks 
bore one, two, and three large yellow-gold stars, respectively. 
General officers of both army and air force wore a crossed sword 
and cannon, with one, two, three, and four gold stars, respective- 
ly. Tito was the only person to hold the rank of marshal, and the 
position was abolished shortly after his death. Junior and senior 
naval officers wore shoulder boards with yellow- gold stripes and 
one yellow-gold star. In rank sequence, the stripe configurations 
of junior officers were one broad, one broad and one narrow, two 
broad, two broad and one narrow, three broad, three broad and 
one narrow, and four broad stripes. 

The four senior naval officer ranks wore one broad band and 
one, two, three, and four broad gold stripes, respectively, each with 
one gold star on the shoulder boards. The shoulder boards of the 
naval dress uniform were like those of the army and air force, dis- 
tinguished by an anchor representing the branch (see fig. 18). 

Soldiers and NCOs were issued uniforms. Soldiers had field and 
service uniforms, while NCOs were authorized a dress uniform 
as well. Because they held conscript or enlisted ranks, military school 
cadets wore soldiers' uniforms. Soldiers' winter and summer uni- 
forms were made of light or heavy wool and cotton in olive-green, 
blue-gray, and black for army, air force, and navy, respectively. 
Navy conscripts and enlisted men also had summer white uniforms. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

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All soldiers wore neckties of the same colors except in summer, 
when the uniform shirt was worn with an open collar. 

There were several variations on the basic soldier's uniform. 
Women's uniforms were of the same style as those for men, ex- 
cept that a skirt was substituted for trousers. Airborne troops wore 
an olive-green beret instead of the standard garrison or service cap. 
The naval infantry wore distinctive blue and white sleeve patches 
and black berets with anchor and wreath emblems. Mountain troops 
wore distinctive stiff field caps with semirigid visors and earflaps. 
They wore loose winter shirts under which additional layers could 
be worn. The shirt itself had a lining and a collar that could be 
turned up to cover the neck and chin. The trousers worn by moun- 
tain troops extended just below the knee, with a strap and buckle 
closure. Leather leggings, heavy wool socks, and foul-weather capes 
also were worn by the mountain troops. 

Officers had to procure their own field, service, dress, and full 
dress uniforms. They wore insignia on the lapels of the field uni- 
form shirts. The service uniform differed only in some details from 
the basic dress uniform. The shirt buttons of the dress uniform were 
yellow-gold instead of the service color. The trousers, jackets, and 
overcoats were piped along the seams with distinctive service 
colors — red for army, blue for air force, and black for navy. The 
dress cap visor showed the same piping as the officer's shoulder 
boards. The general officer's dress cap had a chin strap of twisted 
gold cord. Other officers wore plain plastic or leather chin straps. 
Full dress uniforms were blue and were worn with a yellow-gold 
sash belt lined with the appropriate service color. Cap emblems 
all included a red star with yellow-gold rays, given distinctive con- 
figurations according to branch. Air force officers had the red star 
perched on the wings of an eagle with a sword clenched in its tal- 
ons. Airborne officers had the red star resting on a silver parachute 
against a blue background. Cap emblems for general officers showed 
the same gold wreath as the shoulder boards. 

Defense and the National Economy 

From 1948 until well into the 1980s, Yugoslavia devoted a con- 
siderable proportion of its national resources to defense. By all in- 
dicators, the economy was fairly military oriented, considering the 
country's modest overall level of development. Yugoslavia's non- 
aligned foreign policy made a high military budget necessary be- 
cause the country had no alliances guaranteeing military assistance. 
But the Yugoslav situation resembled that of other communist 
states, such as Cuba, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea 
(North Korea), and Vietnam, which also received considerable 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

amounts of Soviet arms and military equipment without being 
members of the Warsaw Pact. 

On several occasions in the 1980s, the YPA leadership stated 
that the country's economic crisis and diminished resource alloca- 
tions to the military directly affected the quality of YPA weapons, 
equipment, and personnel, thereby weakening YPA ability to pro- 
vide a reliable defense against external threats. Yet critics of the 
YPA contended that the military still spent the major portion of 
the country's resources and that military spending was a major fac- 
tor in the economic crisis that persisted and worsened in Yugosla- 
vs through the 1980s. 

'n 1990 much of the YPA weapons inventory was obsolete. In 
previous years, weapons had been stockpiled from both foreign ac- 
quisition and domestic production. But for long periods, Yugosla- 
via's nonaligned status precipitated partial embargos by both East 
and West. NATO and the Warsaw Tact were cautious about sell- 
ing Yugoslavia advanced weapons that could reach hostile third 
parties. By 1990 Yugoslavia had strengthened its domestic arms 
manufacturing, and that year it claimed that 80 percent cf its new 
weapons came from that source. But both sources remained 
problematic; imports were expensive and politically vulnerable, yet 
domestically produced weapons were generally of lower quality. 
Also, importing equipment from many different manufacturers 
complicated standardization, maintenance, and logistics. Critics 
complained that arms purchases abroad and domestic military 
production were too expensive and were incompatible with long- 
term economic stabilization. The military, however, argued that 
arms procurement helped with the acquisition or development of 
technologies of value in the production of civilian goods. 

Military Budget 

In the early 1980s, the military budget of Yugoslavia held steady 
between US$2 billion and US$2.5 billion, despite the country's 
severe economic stringency. The expanded internal security mis- 
sion of the YPA was probably the compelling factor in higher 
defense spending in the mid-1980s (see Internal Security, this ch.). 
Nevertheless, the Krajgher Commission's Long-Term Economic 
Stabilization Program required the YPA to cut expenditures by 
5 percent in both 1986 and 1987. The 1987 military budget was 
US$2.7 billion, with cuts absorbed largely in reduced manpower 
(see Recruitment and Service Obligations, this ch.). At that time, 
Yugoslav defense expenditures dropped below those of every non- 
Soviet Warsaw Pact state and of neighboring NATO countries Italy 
and Greece. In 1988 the military budget increased to US$2.8 billion 


National Security 

and to over US$4.4 billion in 1989. Yet these increases failed to 
match the national inflation rate, and defense spending declined 
in real terms. 

In postwar Yugoslavia, the burden of the military budget on the 
national economy was traditionally a heavy one. In 1952. at the 
height of spending to meet the Soviet threat to Yugoslavia, 22 per- 
cent of the country's GNP was dedicated to fielding a 500,000-man 
regular army. That figure subsequently decreased, but through- 
out the Tito years it remained relatively high by world standards. 

The military budget as a proportion of federal government ex- 
penditures also reflected the high priority of defense. The federal 
government routinely dedicated 50 percent to 60 percent of its an- 
nual outlay to defense. In the 1980s, this ratio was consistently the 
highest or second highest in the world. In 1987, however, spend- 
ing cuts temporarily dropped the defense share of total federal ex- 
penditures to just under 30 percent. In Yugoslavia this measurement 
overstated the burden of military spending somewhat because many 
government expenditures were made at the republic, province, or 
commune level, rather than at the federal government level. Even 
considering that factor, however, defense remained the largest com- 
ponent of federal government spending. 

Arms Procurement 

In 1990 Yugoslavia remained dependent on the Soviet Union 
for most of its heavy armaments and complex weapons systems, 
including tanks, armored vehicles, antitank and antiaircraft mis- 
siles, and ships. Until the late 1980s, this created a dangerous sit- 
uation in which Yugoslavia's principal arms supplier was also the 
country's greatest apparent external threat. Therefore, in 1990 Yu- 
goslav arms procurement policy aimed to expand purchases from 
the other Warsaw Pact states, the United States, and neutral Eu- 
ropean countries, as well as to increase domestic production. Despite 
significant progress, self-sufficiency in arms supply remained elu- 
sive for both economic and technological reasons. Yugoslavia's 
domestic arms industry remained relatively small, and in 1990 it 
faced declining export markets. 

Arms Imports 

Immediately after World War II, Yugoslavia received a substan- 
tial amount of Italian military equipment as war reparations. The 
Yugoslav arms industry used captured German and Czechoslovak 
weapons as models in manufacturing its own small arms and in- 
fantry equipment. The United States, France, and Britain also sup- 
plied arms after the war. After Yugoslavia broke with the Soviet 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Union in 1948, Yugoslavia depended heavily on the United States 
for military assistance. A United States Military Assistance Advi- 
sory Group (MAAG) was active in Yugoslavia until 1961 , managing 
a total of about US$600 million in military aid. In conjunction with 
the flow of United States weapons, many Yugoslav officers came 
to the United States for training during that period. Yugoslavia 
received World War II-vintage equipment and some more up-to- 
date systems, including M-4 Sherman and M-47 Patton tanks, 
M-2 and M-3 half-tracked personnel carriers, artillery, and F-86 
Thunderflash fighter-bombers. Some of this equipment was still 
in service or held in reserve in 1990. After the Belgrade Declara- 
tion of 1955 improved bilateral relations, the Soviet Union became 
Yugoslavia's main supplier of arms and equipment. In the 1960s, 
Yugoslavia received Soviet T-34 and T-54/-55 tanks, first- 
generation antitank guided missiles, Osa-class missile boats, and 
MiG-21 fighters. In the 1970s, the Soviet Union sold Mi-4 and 
Mi-8 helicopters and SA-2 and SA-6 surface-to-air missiles. Since 
1985 Yugoslavia has received a license to produce a domestic ver- 
sion of the Soviet T-72 tank for its own use and for export. In the 
late 1980s, Yugoslavia was one of only a few countries to be sold 
the new Soviet MiG-29 fighter. At an estimated cost of US$20 mil- 
lion per aircraft, however, the MiG-29 was considered too expen- 
sive for Yugoslavia to purchase more than a few as models for its 
own aircraft industry. 

Purchases from the Soviet Union had the advantage of sparing 
Yugoslavia the scarce hard-currency (see Glossary) reserves required 
as payment by Western suppliers. The Soviet Union also provid- 
ed generous credit and repayment terms. Civilian authorities in 
Yugoslavia voiced serious concerns about the political influence 
gained by the Soviet Union from such favorable terms. Arms sales 
and frequent contacts had the potential to build a constituency 
favorable to the Soviet Union in the YPA and its leadership. In 
any event, the situation in 1990 preserved some of Yugoslavia's 
previous dependency on good relations with the Soviet Union. 

In the late 1980s, economic stringency forced postponement of 
some major military purchases from Western countries. Yugosla- 
via investigated purchase from other suppliers of mobile missile 
systems for defense against armor, aircraft, and ships. Antitank, 
antiaircraft, and antiship missiles were relatively cheap alternatives 
to domestic manufacture of more tanks, interceptors, and ships. 

When possible, Yugoslavia sought to establish licensed domes- 
tic production of foreign weapons systems. In general, Western 
countries placed more restrictions on licensing agreements and 
offered less generous terms than the Soviet Union because the 


National Security 

former saw such deals strictly as profit-making transactions. In all 
cases, Yugoslavia refused to accept political conditions on the use 
or resale of imported arms. In the early 1980s, negotiations to supply 
Yugoslavia with modern United States-manufactured TOW anti- 
tank guided missiles broke down after the revelation that Yugos- 
lavia had violated the terms of a prior transfer by sending M-47 
tanks to the new revolutionary regime in Ethiopia in the early 1980s. 

In the 1970s and 1980s, Yugoslavia expanded significandy its 
arms cooperation with countries outside the Soviet and United 
States spheres. In cooperation with Swiss firms, Yugoslavia pro- 
duced a multiple-use 20mm antiaircraft cannon and incorporated 
the imported Snecma engine into its own M-980 armored combat 
vehicle. The Yugoslav M-60P armored personnel carrier used an 
Austrian engine. Cooperation with other nonaligned countries was 
extensive. With India and Egypt, Yugoslavia traded spare parts 
for Soviet weapons and aircraft. With Swedish assistance, Yugo- 
slav engineers developed laser range finders for sale to Egypt and 
for domestic installation on Soviet-made tanks. Yugoslavia bought 
many systems from two Soviet Warsaw Pact allies, Czechoslovakia 
and Poland. The Yugoslav 128mm YMRL-32 multiple-rocket 
launcher, with thirty-two tubes and automatic reloader, was mod- 
eled after Czechoslovak and Romanian versions of the Soviet 
BM-21 . Yugoslavia purchased MiG-21 fighters made under Soviet 
license in Czechoslovakia; Czechoslovak M53/59 truck-mounted 
antiaircraft guns; and T-55 tanks and An-2 and An-28 transport 
aircraft built under Soviet license in Poland. 

According to the United States Arms Control and Disarmament 
Agency, between 1967 and 1976 the Soviet Union supplied 93 per- 
cent of Yugoslavia's arms purchases, Poland and France supplied 
2 percent each, the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germa- 
ny) and Czechoslovakia supplied 1 percent each, and the United 
States supplied less than 1 percent. In that period, arms made up 
5 to 6 percent of the country's total imports. The situation changed 
considerably in succeeding years as the Soviet Union's supply role 
diminished. Between 1983 and 1987, Yugoslavia bought US$600 
million in arms abroad. The Soviet Union supplied 75. percent of 
this amount and the United States 23 percent, with the remaining 2 
percent supplied by ten other countries. In 1985 economic stringency 
reduced arms imports to US$30 million, less than 0.25 percent of 
total imports. By 1987 that figure had rebounded to US$210 million. 

Domestic Arms Production 

Beginning in the mid-1970s, Yugoslavia made considerable pro- 
gress in replacing imports with cheaper domestically manufactured 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

military equipment. As Yugoslav military equipment approached 
the quality of European equipment, international sale of such 
products became a potential source of hard currency for the Yu- 
goslav economy (see Arms Sales, this ch.). By 1990 Yugoslav in- 
dustry was providing about 80 percent of basic military equipment 
and some advanced systems. But that figure included mostly in- 
fantry weapons, antitank systems, armored vehicles, boats and 
ships, and relatively simple components. Although the objective 
was to keep pace with the best armaments in NATO and Warsaw 
Pact inventories, this goal was hindered by the tremendous finan- 
cial and technological obstacles facing all of Yugoslav industry in 
1990. The Yugoslav arms industry upgraded or modernized ex- 
isting systems when possible, extended the service life or improved 
the effectiveness of major weapons systems, and shared research 
and development breakthroughs with civilian industry to maximize 
economic impact. Yugoslav arms industries operated somewhat 
differendy from other economic enterprises. Article 281 of the Con- 
stitution empowered the federal secretary for national defense to 
regulate associated labor and self-managed organizations involved 
in defense production and research. A 1979 law on domestic defense 
industries consolidated many enterprises producing arms and other 
military equipment. It also provided the federal secretary for na- 
tional defense more direct control over the activities of those en- 
terprises. Domestic defense production in the 1970s had been 
hampered by the relative autonomy of many highly interdepen- 
dent industries. As many as 240 loosely associated enterprises 
produced necessary parts for a single complex weapons system. The 
1979 law weakened the principle of self-management in defense 
production enterprises, citing their special role in national securi- 
ty. The law severely circumscribed the right of employees to set 
prices for their products. This provision allayed military concerns 
about the inflation and escalating arms costs caused by worker wage 
demands. Workers continued the formal process of setting prices, 
but only under strict guidelines issued by the secretary for nation- 
al defense. The secretary also prepared an arms import program. 
Funds from the defense budget had to be allocated if foreign ex- 
change earnings from arms exports did not match the cost of arms 
imports. The secretary was responsible for arranging credit or pay- 
ment terms with foreign governments or suppliers. 

The army was the first priority in Yugoslavia's arms procure- 
ment plans. The most urgent requirements were replacement of 
obsolete armored equipment and improvement of mobile defense 
infantry weapons, including antitank and antiaircraft systems, to 
compensate for infantry manpower cutbacks. In 1990 Yugoslavia 


National Security 

also was developing its own military aircraft and helicopters. Im- 
proved target detection and designation systems were sought. 

In the late 1970s, the Soviet Union granted Yugoslavia a license 
to build the T-72 tank. The Yugoslav version, designated M-84, 
went into serial production in the late 1980s. According to Yugo- 
slav sources, the M-84 had a computerized fire control system, 
electronics, and a laser range finder comparable to those of ad- 
vanced NATO and Warsaw Pact models. It featured protection 
against armor-piercing shells, a low silhouette, and a defensive 
alarm system to warn the crew when the vehicle was illuminated 
by enemy radar, infrared, or laser target designators. 

By contrast, the Yugoslav M-980 armored combat vehicle was 
an entirely domestic design. When initially fielded in 1975, it was 
one of the world's most advanced models, rated on a par with the 
Soviet BMP-1 or French AMX-10. The amphibious M-980 car- 
ried an eight-man infantry squad, a driver, and a gunner. It was 
armed with Soviet AT-3 antitank guided missiles, a 20mm can- 
non, and a 7.92mm machine gun and was powered by a Snecma 
diesel engine. The Yugoslav BOV was a particularly versatile 
domestic armored reconnaissance vehicle configured with a num- 
ber of mounted antitank and antiaircraft weapons systems. 

Yugoslavia produced its first fighter aircraft in 1950 and followed 
it with many trainers and experimental aircraft in later years. In 
the mid-1960s, the Galeb and Jastreb fighters were the first domes- 
tically manufactured jet aircraft. In the 1970s, Yugoslavia produced 
the Super Galeb light attack aircraft and began to work joindy with 
Romania to develop its first sophisticated domestic fighter/attack 
aircraft, the Orao. A single Rolls Royce Mk 632 Viper turbojet 
engine powered the Super Galeb, which carried two twin 23mm 
cannons, 57mm and 128mm rockets, and cluster bombs. Its total 
ordnance load capability was 2,000 kilograms. The Orao incorpo- 
rated both domestic and foreign technology, including twin Rolls 
Royce Mk 633-41 Viper turbojet engines. The initial prototype 
was ready in 1974, and serial production began in 1980. Perfor- 
mance of the Orao was very similar to that of the Alpha jet used 
by NATO forces. 

Although it represented a considerable advance for Yugoslav mili- 
tary aviation, the Orao had some significant shortcomings. It was 
limited to subsonic performance, carried a relatively light weapons 
load of 2,500 kilograms, lacked air-to-air missiles, and offered a 
short combat radius of 400 kilometers. By 1990 fewer than 100 had 
been built, and plans to build a new multirole fighter cast doubt 
on the future of the Orao program. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

In the 1980s, the Ivo Lola Ribar Machine Industry of Belgrade 
began manufacturing French Aerospatiale SA-342 Gazelle helicop- 
ters under license. Called the Partisan, this was the first domesti- 
cally produced rotary-wing aircraft. It could carry four launchers 
for AT-3 antitank guided missiles. 

In 1990 Yugoslavia had a solid technological and manufactur- 
ing base for producing other weapons systems; the main weak points 
of this base were in electronics and guidance technologies. Yugo- 
slavia cooperated with Sweden to produce laser range finders and 
gun sights. Its arms industries used Soviet, Czechoslovak, and Unit- 
ed States models to achieve self-sufficiency in rifles, machine guns, 
light antiarmor rockets, mortars, and artillery pieces and to pro- 
vide a substantial portion of boats and landing craft used by the 
YPA. The Soviet Osa class served as a design model for Yugoslav 
missile boats, which were powered by British turbine engines and 
armed with French-supplied Exocet antiship missiles. The Yugoslav 
501 -class landing craft was a versatile platform capable of transport- 
ing three tanks and two platoons of troops or two eight-gun artillery 
batteries. It also could serve as a coastal minelayer. But in 1990, 
Yugoslavia still relied on the Soviet Union and a number of Italian, 
Spanish, Swiss, and Swedish arms firms for weapons and electronics 
to outfit the ships and boats built in Yugoslav shipyards. 

Domestic production of antitank systems was a high priority be- 
cause such systems were not easily available elsewhere. The Soviet 
Union was reluctant to provide Yugoslavia its more advanced an- 
titank guided missiles, which might be used later against its own 
main battle tanks. The United States had declined to sell TOW 
missiles because Yugoslavia had failed to abide by the terms of previ- 
ous arms transfers. 

Foreign Military Relations 

Working relationships with the military establishments in a wide 
range of foreign countries were an important facet of Yugoslavia's 
nonaligned foreign policy. Maintenance of such links guaranteed 
flexibility in dealing with unforeseen events and provided maxi- 
mum access to advanced foreign military technology. However, 
by 1990 foreign military ties had become a major source of domestic 
political controversy. 

The Yugoslav military had a long-standing relationship with its 
Soviet counterpart. Between 1945 and 1948, the Soviet military 
had a strong formative influence on the new YPA. The Soviet model 
was followed in organization, training, and even uniform style. The 
Soviet Union built some of the first military infrastructure, including 


National Security 

airfields, command posts, and coastal gun emplacements, for the 
Tito government. Although damaged by Yugoslavia's 1948 break 
with the Soviet Union, military ties were renewed quickly after 
Soviet- Yugoslav relations were normalized in 1955. Annual bilateral 
exchanges began between the general staffs of the two countries. 

Although such cooperation gave the Soviet Union considerable 
influence with the Yugoslav military, Yugoslavia rebuffed Soviet 
requests for formal naval base access and airfield landing rights, 
offering instead case-by-case consideration. Landing rights were 
granted Soviet aircraft during the 1967 and 1973 Middle East wars. 
Yugoslavia established a regular contract to maintain and repair 
Soviet submarines and submarine tenders in its shipyard at Ko- 
tor. Military ties to other countries, including the United States, 
served to balance these accommodations to the Soviet Union. The 
secretary for national defense last made an official visit to Washing- 
ton in 1984. 

Warship Visits 

Warships from the Soviet Union and the United States made 
occasional port calls in Yugoslavia, but such visits sometimes 
aroused controversy. After an incident involving the United States 
aircraft carrier Saratoga in 1987, Yugoslavia amended its federal 
law to prohibit foreign warships from using nuclear power or car- 
rying nuclear weapons from entering its territorial waters. The re- 
vised law also placed new restrictions on foreign port calls, limiting 
foreign countries to four formal visits of ten days or fewer each 
year. No more than three combat and two auxiliary ships of the 
same nation were allowed to enter Yugoslav waters during a six- 
month period. Maximum displacements for visiting ships were also 
set at 10,000 tons for combatants and 4,000 tons for submarines 
and auxiliary vessels. The carefully worded new law aimed visita- 
tion limits at the Mediterranean Squadron of the Soviet navy and 
displacement limits at the United States Navy's Sixth Fleet. 

Arms Sales 

In 1990 Yugoslavia was among a small group of less developed 
countries with industrial economies actively developing arms ex- 
port industries. In the international arms market, competition from 
larger countries was formidable. A civilian government organiza- 
tion, the Directorate for Supply and Procurement, managed for- 
eign sales programs. In the late 1980s, arms exports averaged over 
US$400 million per year, exceeding US$500 million per year twice 
between 1977 and 1987. However, the amount fluctuated by as 
much as 40 percent from year to year. Yugoslavia sold almost US$2 



Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

billion worth of weapons to Iraq in its war with Iran during the 
1980s. In that decade, Yugoslav arms sales exceeded those of War- 
saw Pact countries Hungary, the German Democratic Republic 
(East Germany), and Bulgaria; NATO members Belgium and the 
Netherlands; and neutral countries Austria, Sweden, and Switzer- 
land. They were less than those of Warsaw Pact countries Poland, 
Czechoslovakia, and Romania and NATO countries Spain and 
Italy. Arms accounted for an average of 4 percent of total Yugo- 
slav exports annually and as much as 6 or 7 percent in some years. 
In all, Yugoslav arms went to sixty-seven countries in 1990, but 
the Middle East and North Africa were the prime markets. Many 
top customer countries were members of the Nonaligned Move- 
ment. Among other weapons and equipment, Yugoslavia export- 
ed ammunition, antiarmor and antitank weapons systems, frigates, 
missile boats, and Mala swimmer delivery vehicles. A proposed 
expansion for the 1990s was to include foreign sale of the Orao 
ground attack fighter and the Partisan helicopter. 

In the 1980s, Yugoslav weapons sales to troubled regions of the 
world became an important ethical issue for many citizens, espe- 
cially in Slovenia. They objected to the lack of Federal Assembly 
oversight and public information about the country's arms indus- 
tries and their dealings abroad. In the early 1980s, Yugoslavia ap- 
parently helped a Swedish firm avoid Sweden's strict arms export 
laws. It posed as the ultimate recipient of Bofors 40mm L/70 an- 
tiaircraft guns and artillery pieces that were subsequently reexported 
to Libya and Iraq. The incident revealed the extent of Yugoslav 
involvement in the international arms market. In 1988 the situa- 
tion became a cause celebre in Slovenia when the Slovenes who 
had revealed Yugoslavia's role were arrested and tried for divulg- 
ing military secrets. 

Military Exchanges 

Yugoslavia conducted active military exchanges with a number 
of countries, including the United States, the Soviet Union, other 
NATO and Warsaw Pact countries, and several countries in North 
Africa and the Middle East. Reciprocal military visits with the Unit- 
ed States were frequent in the late 1970s, a period of intense Unit- 
ed States concern about the direction of post-Tito Yugoslavia. The 
United States secretary of defense visited Yugoslavia in 1977 to 
discuss possible arms sales and training for YPA officers in the Unit- 
ed States. He and the Yugoslav secretary for national defense ex- 
changed visits the following year. They discussed possible transfer 
of antitank, antiship, and air-to-surface missiles, aircraft engines, 
communications equipment, and an integrated naval air defense 


National Security 

system. Of these, only the sale of Maverick air-to-surface missiles 
was completed. The chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs 
of Staff visited Yugoslavia in 1979 and 1985, and the secretary of 
defense returned there in 1982. These visits included discussions 
of the general strategic situation in Europe and the long-standing 
Yugoslav interest in buying advanced arms from the United States. 

Despite the Soviet Union's role as Yugoslavia's leading arms 
supplier, relatively few high-level military exchanges occurred be- 
tween the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia. A 1988 visit by the Soviet 
minister of defense to Belgrade was the first since 1976; the Yu- 
goslav secretary for national defense returned this visit in 1989. 
Both visits featured discussion of increased military cooperation. 

Yugoslavia had many contacts with countries in North Africa 
and the Middle East, with special attention to Libya, Egypt, and 
Ethiopia. Several high-level exchanges occurred with the Libyan 
armed forces in the late 1970s and 1980s. As a result, Libya pur- 
chased Yugoslav armored personnel carriers, small arms, patrol 
boats, and ammunition, as well as training for Libyan officers in 
Yugoslavia. Egypt and Yugoslavia established a military coopera- 
tion program in 1984. Reciprocal general staff visits in 1988 and 
1989 elaborated the Yugoslav role in training Egyptian soldiers and 
upgrading older Soviet arms and equipment in the Egyptian in- 
ventory. In 1988 the Yugoslav secretary for national defense visit- 
ed Ethiopia to promote military-industrial cooperation between the 
two countries. 

Other significant military visits included reciprocal exchanges 
of high-ranking officers with India in 1979 and 1984 and with An- 
gola in 1979 and 1986. Like Yugoslavia, each of those countries 
had large numbers of Soviet weapons systems that were the stimulus 
for military cooperation. Angola also expressed interest in Yugo- 
slav aircraft and pilot training. 

Internal Security 

The internal security situation in Yugoslavia threatened national 
security in 1990. Internal ethnic tensions were a potential hindrance 
to defense against external threats. As was demonstrated in World 
War II, such discord could be exploited by an aggressor to over- 
come the Yugoslav armed forces and occupy the country. Even 
without external pressures, open civil war among different nation- 
alities seemed a real possibility in 1990. Ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, 
Croats, and Slovenes felt that internal security provisions were ap- 
plied against them with unwarranted severity. After the fall of East 
European communist regimes in 1989, the internal forces aroused 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

by such suspicions and resentments overshadowed any external 
threat to national security. 

Although ordinary crime was an increasing problem in Yugo- 
slav society of the 1980s, political crime or dissidence was more 
widely publicized. Dissident activities ranged from peaceful pro- 
test and publication to the sensational politically motivated violence, 
assassination, and terrorism that had marked the country's histo- 
ry (see The Public and Political Decision Making, ch. 4). In the 
1980s, nationalism was the force behind the most visible dissident 
activity. Deemed a threat to the unity of the Yugoslav federation, 
the advocacy of nationalism was officially considered criminal. Mili- 
tary courts exercised jurisdiction in all cases of dissidence because 
all forms of such activity were considered a threat to national secu- 
rity. In the 1980s, civilian internal security forces proved unable 
to manage large-scale political unrest effectively; they depended 
increasingly on YPA intervention in internal security matters. 


Official Yugoslav sources reported that political offenses increased 
dramatically during the 1980s. Each year several hundred individu- 
als were arrested on political charges. Those arrested generally were 
either intellectuals arguing for greater freedom of expression or na- 
tionalists agitating for change in the composition of the federal 
republic. Violent incidents were rare when compared with peace- 
ful expressions of dissident political ideas. 

The Yugoslav Constitution of 1974 guarantees the citizen many 
basic rights and freedoms, including petition (Article 157); opin- 
ion (Article 166); press, media, speech, expression, association, and 
assembly (Article 167); movement and abode (Article 183); invio- 
lability of the home (Article 184); and confidentiality of commu- 
nication (Article 185). Nevertheless, throughout the 1970s and 1980s 
writers, poets, sociologists, philosophers, and ordinary citizens 
received harsh punishments for exercising the basic political free- 
doms guaranteed by the Constitution as well as by international 
conventions to which Yugoslavia was a signatory. Major loopholes 
in the civil rights language of the Constitution legalized prosecu- 
tion for undefined activities inimical to the established constitu- 
tional order (see Djilas, Praxis, and Intellectual Repression, ch. 
4). By 1990 many proposals for a new constitution called for elimi- 
nation of the vague language that had allowed selective prosecu- 
tion. Given the open political climate in other East European states 
by 1990, Yugoslav government and LCY officials became increas- 
ingly sensitive to descriptions of Yugoslavia as a police state. In- 
ternal and external political events pressured the government and 


National Security 

party toward competing with politically unacceptable opinions and 
ideas rather than imposing prison sentences on those who expressed 

The federal criminal code of 1977 contained one chapter on petty 
offenses against the social system and security of the country. It 
included a number of political offenses and so-called "verbal 
crimes," another catchall category under which many types of op- 
position could be thwarted. Any article, pamphlet, or speech ad- 
vocating changes in the socialist self-management system, disrupting 
the unity of nations and nationalities, or maliciously or untruth- 
fully portraying sociopolitical conditions in the country was punish- 
able by one to ten years in prison (Article 133). Also known as 
the Law on Hostile Propaganda, this was the most infamous and 
frequently applied criminal law against political activity. A con- 
viction on charges of hostile propaganda did not require the prose- 
cution to prove that the article, pamphlet, or speech in question 
was malicious or untruthful. 

Article 133 carried a mandatory three-year sentence in cases with 
foreign involvement. Preparing, possessing, or reproducing such 
material for dissemination could bring a prison term of five years. 
A sentence for violating Article 133 usually was followed by a ban 
on public appearance and expression for several years. The law 
criminalized open criticism of the one-party political system, the 
LCY, or Tito; possession of unsanctioned historical treatises or 
emigre newspapers; granting of interviews or writing of works pub- 
lished abroad; authoring of political graffiti; and circulation of pe- 
titions to delete Article 133 from the federal criminal code. The 
Law on Hostile Propaganda was applied stricdy against Yugoslav 
workers abroad, who often returned with emigre literature or 
newspapers in their possession. A less serious category of "verbal 
crime" was described as damaging the reputation of the state or 
its leaders and spreading false rumors. Such activity was punish- 
able by short prison terms of one or two months. 

In the wake of the Kosovo unrest in 1981 , more than 2,000 eth- 
nic Albanians, many of them students and instructors at the Univer- 
sity of PriStina, were arrested on charges of damaging official 
reputations. About 250 people received sentences under Article 133 
for terms of one to fifteen years. Another 250 people received fines 
or sentences of sixty days for lesser "verbal crimes." Although some 
violent clashes had occurred, most convictions were for shouting 
or painting slogans on walls or distributing pamphlets or poems. 

Several other laws criminalized peaceful political or nationalist as- 
sociation and assembly. Such activities included participation in hos- 
tile activity (Article 131), incitement to national hatred (Article 134), 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

association for the purpose of hostile activity (Article 136), and 
counterrevolutionary endangering of the social order (Article 114). 
The maximum sentence among those provisions was eight years 
in prison. Yugoslavs abroad who contacted emigre political par- 
ties or nationalist groups or who participated in demonstrations 
inside the country have been sentenced under these laws. After the 
Croatian nationalist crisis of 1969-71, over 500 Croats were sen- 
tenced using those provisions. Article 134 in particular was applied 
to silence individuals who raised the political, economic, or cul- 
tural grievances of a particular nation or nationality or who com- 
plained of discrimination against such a group. The provision was 
used to prevent the public use of national flags and songs represent- 
ing the ethnic groups of the Yugoslav federation. 

In the absence of legal means of peaceful political expression, 
many individuals and groups resorted to violence. Several nation- 
alist organizations maintained armed paramilitary or terrorist units. 
Their actions had the negative effect of justifying government 
repression of peaceful as well as violent dissidents. Nationalist 
groups aimed bombing and sabotage attacks at official targets in 
Yugoslavia and abroad. 

The secret police relentlessly pursued underground nationalist 
groups. In 1984 twenty-three Croats identified with the separatist 
Croatian Militant Unity group were convicted for allegedly smug- 
gling arms into the country and perpetrating a series of bombings. 
The next year, six Macedonians were imprisoned for a campaign 
of bombings during the early 1970s. 

After two decades of unrest, ethnic Albanians in Kosovo increas- 
ingly turned to violence. They occasionally used firearms and ex- 
plosives against the security forces, occupying YPA troops, and 
Serbs in Kosovo. This development indicated the adverse conse- 
quences of universal military training in a tense ethnic situation. 
Many ethnic Albanians involved in violent activity apparendy had 
learned to handle weapons in the army or in the TDF. One group 
in Kosovo hijacked a government vehicle carrying small arms. 

Courts, Detention, and Punishment 

Arrest without warrant was standard procedure. Detainees had 
the right to know the reasons for their arrest within twenty-four 
hours, by which time their families were to be informed of their 
whereabouts. Under Article 178 of the Constitution, a prisoner 
could be held three days before a judge was required to decide 
whether further detention was permissible. The court could detain 
individuals for three months without charging them with a crimi- 
nal offense. The federal Supreme Court had the power to extend 


National Security 

imprisonment by an additional three months without charging the 
individual with a crime. The judiciary lacked sufficient indepen- 
dence to ensure impartial justice for all citizens. Judges were sub- 
ject to party discipline by the LCY, through which they had reached 
office. Most judges were appointed only after receiving party ap- 
proval of their "moral-political suitability." The State Presidency 
directly appointed and dismissed judges and prosecutors (see Court 
System, ch. 4). 

Twelve major federal prisons were operated throughout the coun- 
try. Even party veterans admitted that prison conditions were worse 
under the LCY-dominated government than they were under the 
old regime. Amnesty International received occasional reports of 
psychological and physical abuse applied to obtain confessions from 
detainees. That organization estimated that at least several hundred 
political prisoners were held in Yugoslavia in any given year of 
the 1980s. Thousands of other citizens were punished by more in- 
sidious means. The government often revoked or denied passports, 
or it dismissed suspicious individuals from employment in their 
chosen profession. 

The military had a separate court system, which included the 
Office of the Military Prosecutor and the Supreme Military Court. 
Military courts tried cases involving criminal offenses by armed 
forces personnel and cases otherwise connected with military ser- 
vice. The most serious offenses in this category were desertion, 
dereliction of duty, and activities contrary to military morale. Ar- 
ticle 22 1 of the Constitution also granted military courts jurisdic- 
tion over certain criminal offenses committed by civilians but related 
to national defense. They could impose sentences, including the 
death penalty, for criminal offenses that undermined the econom- 
ic or military strength of the country in times of war or imminent 
danger of war. In the 1980s, military courts were increasingly used 
for proceedings against civilians because they could be conducted 
in closed sessions. The State Presidency appointed and dismissed 
military judges and prosecutors, as it did for civil courts. 

In a highly publicized case in 1988, two young Slovenian jour- 
nalists and a noncommissioned officer were arrested by military 
authorities and accused of illegally possessing secret military in- 
formation. The journalists had recently published an article criti- 
cal of the Yugoslav role as intermediary in Swedish arms sales to 
Libya and Iraq. When a military court in Ljubljana found them 
guilty of revealing military secrets, thousands of Slovenes protest- 
ed the trial, and a rash of physical attacks on YPA personnel fol- 
lowed the verdict. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Internal Security Forces 

Internal security forces were instrumental in establishing and 
maintaining the communist-controlled Yugoslav state after World 
War II. They were responsible for identifying and prosecuting 
UstaSe leaders and others who collaborated with occupying Ger- 
man and Italian forces during World War II. But alleged collabo- 
ration became a pretext for reprisals against political opponents 
such as the Cetnici and others who did not support Tito's Parti- 
sans. Many, including Cetnik leader Draza Mihajlovic and Croa- 
tian Roman Catholic archbishop Alojzije Stepinac, were executed 
or imprisoned after summary trials. 

After the break in relations with the Soviet Union in 1948, the 
Yugoslav government feared that the Soviet Union might find or 
create a group within Yugoslavia to request Soviet intervention 
to assist it in "preserving socialism. " The Yugoslav security agency 
investigated more than 50,000 alleged "Cominformists" (from 
Cominform — see Glossary), or pro-Soviet party members, who 
were subsequently purged from the party. Several thousand were 
eventually jailed, either without trials or after show trials. They 
were interned in political prisons at Goli Otok in the Adriatic, at 
Sremska Mitrovica in Vojvodina, and at Stara GradiSka in Bos- 
nia. Others were subjected to administrative punishment or petty 

In 1948 the Soviet Union formed an orthodox CPY in exile to 
rally Tito's opponents and to topple him. To support this move- 
ment, an estimated 200 to 300 Yugoslav "Cominformists" took 
up residence in Moscow. The YPA was an important target of their 
anti-Tito propaganda. The CPY in exile held meetings outside the 
Soviet Union and clandestine party congresses inside Yugoslavia. 
During this time, Yugoslav internal security forces exercised great 
power and directed much of it at the YPA. Security agents exposed 
many real or suspected Soviet operatives in high positions in the 
YPA, and some of those accused were executed. The resulting bit- 
terness and rivalry between the internal security forces and the YPA 
survived for decades afterward. 

In 1966 a major purge of the Yugoslav internal security forces 
benefited the military in this rivalry. The chief of the secret police — 
the Directorate for State Security (Uprava drzavne bezbednosti — 
UDB) — Aleksandar Rankovic, was involved in the behind-the- 
scenes struggle to be next in line to Tito. Allegedly on orders from 
Rankovic, the UDB covertly monitored the telephone calls of all 
major party leaders, including Tito. When Rankovic was dismissed 
in 1966, however, the official announcement mentioned only his 


National Security 

responsibility for UDB brutality and repression of Kosovo's Alba- 
nian population. The military equivalent of the UDB, the Military 
Counterintelligence Service (KontraobaveStajna sluzba — KOS) was 
instrumental in exposing UDB activities. The UDB was purged, 
its name was changed to the State Security Service (Sluzba drzavne 
bezbednosti — SDB), and a YPA general became its chief. In its 
new form, the agency retained substantial secret police powers. 

The YPA has maintained some control over the civilian security 
service since the 1966 purge. After the Croatian nationalist unrest 
of 1971 , a general became federal secretary for internal affairs (the 
secretariat controlling the SDB), and another became federal public 
prosecutor. Using such appointments, the military controlled the 
internal security forces until 1984. In 1990 a former chief of the 
YPA General Staff was federal secretary for internal affairs. 

During the 1980s, the SDB actively pursued its mission of iden- 
tifying and neutralizing emigre organizatii >ns in foreign countries 
to inhibit their efforts to establish contacts and support inside Yu- 
goslavia. A small number of emigre groups of various political per- 
suasions and nationalities committed violent acts ar i; « Yugoslav 
interests abroad. Those acts sometimes includeo assassinations of 
Yugoslav diplomats or representatives abroad. Special attention 
went to pro-Soviet Yugoslav exiles, whose activities against the Yu- 
goslav government were well supported by Soviet funds. Believ- 
ing that such groups threatened public order, the SDB and its 
clandestine foreign intelligence units used various means to coun- 
ter their activities. The SDB monitored the activities of the pro- 
Soviet CPY organization, which advocated overthrow of Tito, in 
Yugoslavia and other countries. In 1974 thirty-two Montenegrins 
convicted of organizing a CPY congress received prison terms of 
up to fourteen years. A long investigation of this case ended in the 
arrest of a Soviet diplomat in 1976. 

Another major task of the SDB was to monitor Croatian organi- 
zations in Austria, Sweden, France, West Germany, Canada, and 
the United States. Surveillance of these groups provided evidence 
for prosecuting Yugoslavs who contacted them when abroad and 
then returned home. The SDB reportedly abducted and assassi- 
nated prominent emigres. A former YPA colonel who escaped im- 
prisonment as an alleged "Cominformist" in 1948 was seized in 
Romania in 1976, clandestinely returned to Yugoslavia, and jailed. 
As many as twenty troublesome emigres may have been killed in 
Europe by the SDB, by other Yugoslav operatives, or by their paid 
agents since the early 1970s. In 1981 two West Germans and one 
Yugoslav were convicted for murdering an emigre in West Ger- 
many. They were allegedly paid a large sum to kill a former SDB 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

agent who defected from the security service while abroad. How- 
ever, the Yugoslav government contended that most violence against 
emigres was committed by rival emigre organizations, not by 
the SDB. 

Organization for Internal Security 

The Council for the Protection of the Constitutional Order was 
the highest government organization responsible for internal secu- 
rity matters. Its chairman was the president of the collective State 
Presidency, and its membership included the federal secretary for 
internal affairs, the federal secretary for national defense, and other 
military, party, and civilian officials. Under the Constitution, the 
State Presidency has the authority to order the use of the armed 
forces in peacetime to ensure internal security. It can suspend any 
provision in the Constitution if necessary for defense and security 
during war or imminent danger of war. 

Considerable police and paramilitary power was concentrated 
in the Secretariat for Internal Affairs, which supervised the work 
of subordinate secretariats for internal affairs in the republics and 
provinces. Besides the SDB, the federal secretariat included the 
Office of the Federal Public Prosecutor, who in turn controlled pub- 
lic prosecutors in the republics. 

The SDB was responsible for identifying and neutralizing sub- 
versive elements regarded as threats to the constitutional order and 
the socialist self-management system. Both violent groups and 
peaceful dissidents were included in this broad category. Plainclothes 
SDB agents investigated and monitored such groups and infiltrated 
their ranks. One of the SDB's most effective weapons was the con- 
cept of social self-protection. It was the equivalent of the TDF in 
internal security matters. Article 173 of the Constitution declared 
the duty of all citizens to participate in social self-protection by 
reporting immediately to the SDB their knowledge of "hostile activi- 
ties," including ordinary crime, political offenses, and terrorism. 

The Secretariat for Internal Affairs also controlled a federal 
paramilitary force, the People's Militia, which numbered more than 
15,000 troops. This force operated numerous BOV-M armored 
vehicles equipped with machine guns, water cannons, smoke and 
tear gas launchers for crowd control and riot situations, armored 
personnel carriers, and helicopters. These internal security troops 
were well paid, heavily indoctrinated, experienced, and reliable. 
They could be deployed in times of political unrest or disorder when 
the local police were expected to side with the populace against fed- 
eral authorities. The People's Militia provided security for the 1984 
Winter Olympics in Sarajevo. The Secretariat for Internal Affairs 


National Security 

also controlled 15,000 troops in border guard units. In coastal areas, 
the border guards operated sixteen patrol boats in 1990. 

The secretariats for internal affairs in the republics and provinces 
controlled the militia (regular police) forces in their territory. In 
1990 there were an estimated 40,000 professional law enforcement 
officers. They were responsible for maintaining government com- 
munications, issuing travel documents to citizens, and registering 
foreign residents. The average militia officer was male, twenty- 
two years of age, and had completed his secondary education in 
special schools operated by the Secretariat for Internal Affairs. Select 
militia officers were later sent for a university education. 

The militia were organized into stations and substations in larger 
cities. They were involved in routine law enforcement as well as 
more sensitive cases involving ethnic groups. Cases ranged from 
physical attacks and harassment to homicide. In Pri§tina, site of 
a major university and a center of Albanian ethnic dissidence, 
every confrontation with authority had the potential to erupt into 
large disturbances between ethnic communities. In 1990 that city 
had seven militia stations and four substations, serving a popula- 
tion of 400,000. 

The Military in Domestic Peacekeeping 

The YPA became involved in internal security when unrest in 
Kosovo escalated in 1981. Under a declaration of national emer- 
gency, the army intervened to stop demonstrations by ethnic Al- 
banians beyond the control of the LCY, People's Militia, and local 
militia. Hundreds of citizens were injured, and some were killed 
during the YPA's suppression of the demonstrations. Some reports 
indicated that one-fourth of the YPA's total manpower remained 
in Kosovo to maintain order throughout the 1980s. The YPA 
presence added to local resentment; demonstrations resumed in 
1987 and continued through 1990. 

Use of military force against the domestic population to main- 
tain order aroused controversy. Top government and party lead- 
ers, rank-and-file military, and government critics expressed varying 
opinions. Political leaders expected the military to ensure the uni- 
ty of Yugoslavia and preserve its constitutional order against in- 
ternal threats. Yet the internal security mission put the YPA under 
great stress because it was not structured or equipped for such ac- 
tivity. In Kosovo the YPA suffered consistent intense hostility from 
the ethnic Albanian population, including armed attacks by local 
militants. Some officers believed involvement in ethnic problems 
put the army in a dangerous position of opposing large segments 
of society. More important, they believed that such involvement 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

might weaken or divide the YPA. Many in this group preferred 
to stay in the barracks and concentrate on defense against foreign 
aggression. Outside critics of the YPA also argued that its only legiti- 
mate role was external defense and that the army was a bulwark 
of the excessive centralism opposed by many citizens. The YPA 
seemed to be involved in all Yugoslavia's political and social crises. 
Some citizens looked to it for solutions; others viewed it as part 
of the country's problems. 

The controversy surrounding the role of the YPA in 1990 meant 
that the political and social tensions of Yugoslavia had finally be- 
gun to affect the last bastion of all- Yugoslav solidarity. Significant 
reduction in the threat of foreign invasion and the urgent need for 
reduction in a high military budget also brought major changes 
in actual Yugoslav military practice — although in 1990 the World 
War II-vintage doctrine of civilian defense forces and preparation 
for invasion remained in place. At the policy level, Yugoslavia's 
nonaligned military position remained firm; greater emphasis on 
domestic arms manufacture and reduced reliance on the Soviet 
Union and other suppliers strengthened that position. Meanwhile, 
Yugoslav security forces continued to monitor dissident activity at 
home and abroad. As nationalist political activism grew in the 
1980s, the role of the security forces increased, particularly in tur- 
bulent Kosovo. By 1990, however, the democratization of neigh- 
boring countries and the pluralization of Yugoslav society exerted 
substantial pressure to abolish laws that justified arbitrary prose- 
cution of domestic dissident activity. Many observers believed that 
the fragmentation threatened by reduced control of nationalist ac- 
tivity might become a justification for military intervention in na- 
tional politics or for expanded use of the YPA in quelling civil 

* * * 

In Yugoslavia 's Security Dilemmas and numerous articles, Marko 
Milivojevic shows that he is a leading student of Yugoslav security 
and military affairs. A number of Yugoslav authors describe well 
the country's military history and doctrine. Walter R. Roberts's 
Ti'/o, Mihailovic, and the Allies, 1941-1945, a vital work on Yugosla- 
via during World War II, was revised and updated in 1987. 
Although articles by former YPA officer and emigre Milan N. Vego 
are somewhat dated, they offer firsthand experience with the sub- 
ject. The Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports on external 
security matters are useful sources of up-to-date information on ex- 
ternal security matters. The Daily Report: East Europe of the Foreign 


National Security 

Broadcast Information Service is important for obtaining transla- 
tions of illuminating articles from the Yugoslav military press. The 
United States Arms Control and Disarmament Agency's annual 
report World Military Expenditures and Arms Transfers is a source of 
data on the economics of national defense in Yugoslavia. Amnesty 
International reports provide reliable coverage of the internal secu- 
rity and human rights situation in the country. (For further infor- 
mation and complete citations, see Bibliography.) 




1 Metric Conversion Coefficients and Factors 

2 Life Expectancy by Republic and Province, 1952 and 1982 

3 Birth Rates and Mortality Rates by Republic and Province, 

1947 and 1984 

4 Population by Ethnic Group, 1948 and 1981 

5 Ethnic Structure of Republics and Provinces, 1981 

6 Estimated Pension Recipients, 1965, 1982, and 1988 

7 Level of Education by Republic and Province, 1953 and 1981 

8 Schools Teaching Minority Languages, 1987 

9 Literacy Rate by Republic and Province, 1948 and 1981 

10 Medical Personnel and Hospital Beds, Selected Years, 1955-87 

11 Government Budget, 1988 

12 Employment in Selected Enterprise Categories, 1975, 1985, 

and 1988 

13 Indexes of Production in Selected Nonpriority Industries, 

Selected Years, 1952-90 

14 Indicators of Agricultural Development, 1975, 1985, and 1988 

15 Value of Selected Exports, 1986, 1987, and 1988 

16 Value of Selected Imports, 1986, 1987, and 1988 

17 Principal Trading Partners, 1988 

18 Debt Data, 1984, 1986, and 1988 

19 Area and Population of Republics and Provinces, 1981 



Table 1. Metric Conversion Coefficients and Factors 

When you know Multiply by To find 

Millimeters 0.04 inches 

Centimeters 0.39 inches 

Meters 3.3 feet 

Kilometers 0.62 miles 

Hectares (10,000 m J ) 2.47 acres 

Square kilometers 0.39 square miles 

Cubic meters 35.3 cubic feet 

Liters 0.26 gallons 

Kilograms 2.2 pounds 

Metric tons 0.98 long tons 

1.1 short tons 

2,204 pounds 

Degrees Celsius 9 degrees Fahrenheit 

(Centigrade) divide by 5 

and add 32 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 


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Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Table 4. Population by Ethnic Group, 1948 and 1981 

Ethnic Group 1948 1981 

Serbs 6,547,117 8,140,452 

Croats 3,784,353 4,428,005 

Muslim Slavs 808,921 1,999,957 

Slovenes 1,415,432 1,753,554 

Albanians 750,431 1,730,364 

Macedonians 810,126 1,339,729 

Yugoslavs 1 n.a. 1,219,045 

Montenegrins 425,703 579,023 

Hungarians 496,492 426,866 

Gypsies 72,736 168,099 

Turks 97,954 101,191 

Slovaks 83,626 80,334 

Romanians 64,095 54,954 

Bulgars 61,140 36,185 

Vlachs 102,953 32,063 

Ruthenians 37,140 23,285 

Czechs 39,015 19,625 

Italians 79,575 15,132 

Ukrainians n.a. 12,813 

Germans 55,337 8,712 

Russians 20,069 4,463 

Poles n.a. 3,043 

Greeks n.a. 1,639 

Austrians n.a. 1,402 

Jews n.a. 1,383 

Other 19,883 17,645 

TOTAL 15,772,098 22,424,711 2 

n.a. — not available. 

1 No ethnic identity claimed. 

1 Include! individuals not reporting or not reporting under prescribed census headings. 

Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Statistuki godiinjak 
Jugoslavije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 122. 



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Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Table 6. Estimated Pension Recipients, 1965, 1982, and 1988 














Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Statisticki godisnjak 
Jugoslauije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 406. 



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Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Table 8. Schools Teaching Minority Languages, 1987 

Language Primary Schools Secondary Schools 

Albanian 1,221 112 

Bulgarian 40 n.a. 

Hungarian 151 25 

Italian 27 7 

Romanian 31 2 

Turkish 66 14 

Other * 40 4 

n.a. — not available. 

* Czech, Russian, Slovak, and Ukrainian. 

Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Staiisti&i godisnjak 
Jugoslavije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 373. 

Table 9. Literacy Rate by Republic and Province, 1948 and 1981 

Republic or Province 1948 1981 




















* Serbia proper is the Republic of Serbia excluding the provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. 

Source: Based on information from Dusan Miljkovic' (ed.), Jugoslavia, 1945-1985, Belgrade, 
1986, 199; and Joseph Rothschild, East Central Europe Between the Two World Wars, 
Seattle, 1974, ix. 



Table 10. Medical Personnel and Hospital Beds, Selected Years, 1955-87 

1955 1965 1975 1987 


Specialists n.a. 9,714 13,466 24,897 

Other n.a. 5,729 10,747 20,972 

Total physicians 8,136 15,443 24,213 45,869 

Medical workers n.a. 53,150 95,004 145,372 

Hospital beds 68,165 112,958 127,645 142,427 

n.a. — not available. 

Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Statistiild godiinjak 
Jugoslavije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 400. 

Table 11. Government Budget, 1988 
(in billions of dinars)* 

Republic, Province, 

and Commune Federal 

Schools 128 

Defense 50 5,247 

Public health and social welfare 334 1,184 

Government 3,234 454 

Other 3,402 712 

TOTAL 7,148 7,597 

* For value of the dinar — see Glossary. 

Source: Based on information from 77* Europa World Year Book, 1990, 2, London, 1990, 2976. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Table 12. Employment in Selected Enterprise Categories, 
1975, 1985, and 1988 
(in thousands of workers) 

Enterprise Category 1975 1985 1988 
























TOTAL 4,758 6,516 6,884 

Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Statistilki godiinjak 
Jugoslavije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 144. 

Table 13. Indexes of Production in Selected Nonpriority Industries, 
Selected Years, 1952-90 
(1987 <= 100) 



































Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Slatisttfki goditnjak 
Jugoslavije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 280. 



Table 14. Indicators of Agricultural Development, 
1975, 1985, and 1988 

1975 1985 1988 

Tractors 1 

State 26 32 33 

Private 200 850 1,033 

Total tractors 226 882 1,066 

Livestock 1 

State 458 863 924 

Private 4,981 4,412 4,153 

Total livestock 5,439 5,275 5,077 

Cultivated area 2 

State 1,535 1,695 1,741 

Private 8,466 8,146 8,077 

Total cultivated area 10,001 9,841 9,818 

1 In thousands. 

3 In thousands of hectares. 

Source: Based on information from Yugoslavia, Savezni zavod za statistiku, Sialistuki godisnjak 
Jugoslavije, 1989, Belgrade, 1990, 250. 

Table 15. Value of Selected Exports, 1986, 1987, and 1988 
(in billions of dinars) * 



























* For value of the dinar — see Glossary. 

Source: Based on information from The Europa World Year Book, 1990, 2, London, 1990, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Table 16. Value of Selected Imports, 1986, 1987, and 1988 
(in billions of dinars) * 

Commodity 1986 1987 1988 






















• For value of the dinar — see Glossary. 

Source: Based on information from The Europe World Year Book, 1990, 2, London, 1990, 

Table 17. Principal Trading Partners, 1988 
(in billions of dinars) 1 


Imports 2 

Exports ' 






















TOTAL 34,377 32,881 

1 For value of the dinar — see Glossary. 
' Cost, insurance, and freight. 
5 Free on board. 

Source: Based on information from The Europa World Year Book, 1990, 2, London, 1990, 



Table 18. Debt Data, 1984, 1986, and 1988 
(in millions of United States dollars) 

1984 1986 1988 

















* IMF — International Monetary Fund. 

Source: Based on information from World Bank, World Debt Tables, 1989-90, Washing- 
ton, 1990, 21. 

Table 19. Area and Population of Republics and Provinces, 1981 

Republic or Province 

Area 1 
























Novi Sad 




1 In square kilometers. 

1 Serbia proper is the Republic of Serbia excluding the provinces of Kosovo and Vojvodina. The total 
area of the Republic of Serbia is 88,361 square kilometers, and the total population of the republic 
is 9,313,677. 

Source: Based on information from The Europa Year Book, 1990, 2, London, 1990, 2974. 



Chapter 1 

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Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

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Chapter 4 

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rope/Radio Liberty, Report on Eastern Europe [Munich]; South Slav 
Journal; and Washington Post.) 

Chapter 5 

Amnesty International. Yugoslavia: Prisoners of Conscience. London: 

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Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

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Jane's Fighting Ships, 1989-90. (Ed., Richard Sharpe.) Surrey, Unit- 
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Jane's Infantry Weapons, 1989-90. (Ed., Ian V. Hogg). Surrey, Unit- 
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Milivojevic, Marko. "Yugoslavia's Security Dilemmas and the 
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"The Yugoslav People's Army," Armed Forces, 6, 1987, 


"The Yugoslav People's Army: Another Jaruzelski on the 

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Yugoslavia. The Constitution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugo- 
slavia. Belgrade: Dopisna delavska univerza, 1974. 

(Various issues of the following periodicals were also used in the 
preparation of this chapter: Foreign Broadcast Information Ser- 
vice, Daily Report: East Europe; and Radio Free Europe/Radio 
Liberty, Report on Eastern Europe [Munich].) 



Cetnik (pi., Cetnici) — Name derived from the Serbian word for 
detachment; in full, Cetnik Detachments of the Yugoslav Army 
of the Fatherland. Given to several Serbian resistance groups 
in World War II organized to oppose occupying Nazis and 
Croatian collaborators. Avoiding large-scale conflict with the 
invaders, the Cetnici mosdy fought the communist Partisans 
(q.v.) of Josip Broz Tito. The most important Cetnik group 
was led by Draza Mihajlovic. 

collectivization of agriculture — The process of imposing state control 
of agriculture by forming privately held land into socially owned 
and managed farms. 

Comecon (Council for Mutual Economic Assistance) — A multilater- 
al economic alliance headquartered in Moscow. Members in 
1990 included Bulgaria, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, the German 
Democratic Republic (East Germany), Hungary, Mongolia, 
Poland, Romania, the Soviet Union, and Vietnam. Also 
referred to as CMEA or CEMA. 

Cominform (Communist Information Bureau) — An internation- 
al communist organization (1947-56) including the communist 
parties of Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, France, Hungary, Italy, 
Poland, Romania, the Soviet Union, and Yugoslavia (expelled 
in 1948). Formed on Soviet initiative, it issued propaganda ad- 
vocating international communist solidarity as a tool of Soviet 
foreign policy. 

Cyrillic — Alphabet ascribed to missionaries Cyril and Methodius 
(ninth century), developed from Greek for church literature 
in Russian. The official alphabet of the Soviet Slavic repub- 
lics, Yugoslavia excepting Croatia and Slovenia, and Bulgar- 
ia, it was one of the three principal alphabets of the world. 

dinar — Yugoslav national currency unit consisting of 100 paras. 
Devalued frequendy after 1980. In 1980 exchange rate was 
YD24.9 per US$1; in 1985, YD270.2 per US$1; and in 1988, 
YD2.522.6 per US$1 . In 1990 new "heavy" dinar was estab- 
lished, worth 10,000 old dinars; 1990 exchange rate was fixed 
at 7 dinars per West German deutsche mark. New rate Janu- 
ary 1991 was YD10.50 per US$1. 

Dual Monarchy — Popular name for the Habsburg Empire after 
the 1867 Ausgleich (Compromise) that united Austria and Hun- 
gary under a common monarch; arranged to bolster the waning 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

influence of Austria in Europe. Also known as the Austro- 
Hungarian Empire. 

EC (European Community) — A group of three primarily economic 
communities of West European countries, including the Eu- 
ropean Economic Community (EEC — q.v.), the European 
Atomic Energy Community (Euratom or EAEC), and the Eu- 
ropean Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). Executive power 
rested with the European Commission, which implemented and 
defended the community treaties in the interests of the EC as 
a whole. Also known as the European Communities. 

EEC (European Economic Community) — The "Common Mar- 
ket" of primarily West European countries organized to pro- 
mote coordinated development of economic activities, 
continuous and balanced expansion, increased stability, and 
closer relations among member states. Methods included elimi- 
nation of customs duties and import restrictions among mem- 
ber states and a common customs tariff, a common commercial 
policy toward outside countries, and a common agricultural 
and transport policy. 

EFTA (European Free Trade Association) — Created in 1960 to 
bring about free trade in industrial goods and expansion of trade 
in agricultural goods among member countries. In 1990 mem- 
bers included Austria, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and 
Switzerland. The Joint EFT A- Yugoslavia Committee was es- 
tablished in 1978 to expand trade and industrial cooperation 
with Yugoslavia. 

GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) — An integrat- 
ed set of bilateral trade agreements among nations, formed in 
1947 to abolish quotas and reduce tariffs. Yugoslavia became 
a member of GATT in 1965, when its tariff and trade regula- 
tions were brought into line with international practices. 

GDP (gross domestic product) — A measure of the total value of 
goods and services produced by a domestic economy during 
a given period, usually a year. Obtained by adding the value 
of profits, employee compensation, and depreciation of capi- 
tal from each sector of the economy. 

GMP (gross material product) — The value added by the produc- 
tive sectors before deduction of depreciation. GMP excludes 
the value of services in the nonproductive sectors such as 
defense, public administration, finance, education, health, and 
housing. Also known as social product. 

GNP (gross national product) — The sum of the gross domestic 
product (GDP — q. v. ) and the income received from abroad by 
residents, minus payments remitted abroad to nonresidents. 



Green Plans — A series of federal government agricultural plans in 
Yugoslavia for the period 1973 through 1985, aimed at stimulat- 
ing agricultural production. They provided for large foreign 
and domestic investment in agriculture and incentives for pri- 
vate agriculture. 

hard currency — Currency freely convertible and traded on inter- 
national currency markets. 

Helsinki Accords — Signed August 1975 by all European countries 
except Albania, plus Canada and the United States, to endorse 
general principles of international behavior, especially in eco- 
nomic, environmental, and humanitarian issues. Helsinki Ac- 
cords is short form for the Final Act of the Conference on 
Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE). 

IMF (International Monetary Fund) — Established with the World 
Bank (q.v.) in 1945, a specialized agency affiliated with the Unit- 
ed Nations and responsible for stabilizing international ex- 
change rates and payments. Its main business is providing loans 
to its members when they experience balance of payments 

LCY (League of Communists of Yugoslavia) — Until 1990 the sole 
legal political party of Yugoslavia. Each republic and province 
had a separate organization, such as the League of Communists 
of Macedonia. Until 1952 called the Communist Party of Yu- 
goslavia (CPY). In J 990 the national organization split at the 
Fourteenth Party Congress; some republic parties took differ- 
ent names, e.g., the Serbian party changed its name from 
League of Communists of Serbia to Socialist Party of Serbia. 
All the republic communist parties remained intact (although 
reduced in membership) and ran candidates in the multiparty 
1990 republic elections. 

market socialism — The economic system introduced in 1963 in Yu- 
goslavia based on worker- managed enterprises, using domes- 
tic and foreign market forces as a management guide. 

nation and nationality — Juridically important distinctions that 
played significant roles in Yugoslav political life, in spite of legis- 
lation that gave full equality to minorities in culture, public 
life, and language. The term nation was used in reference to 
ethnic groups whose traditional territorial homelands lay mostly 
within the modern boundaries of Yugoslavia, i.e., the Croats, 
Macedonians, Montenegrins, Muslim Slavs, Serbs, and Slo- 
venes. The term nationality, or national minority, designated 
groups in Yugoslavia whose homelands were outside Yugosla- 
via; the largest of these were the Hungarians and the Albanians. 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

pan-Slavism — A nineteenth-century intellectual movement that 
sought to unite the Slavic peoples of Europe based on their com- 
mon ethnic background, culture, and political goals. 

Partisans — Popular name for resistance forces led by Josip Broz 
Tito during World War II. In December 1941, adopted for- 
mal name People's Liberation Army and Partisan Detachments. 

Serbia proper — The part of the Republic of Serbia not including 
the provinces of Vojvodina and Kosovo; the ethnic and politi- 
cal core of the Serbian state. 

social product — See GMP (gross material product). 

social sector — The sector of the Yugoslav economy in which assets 
were socially owned and self-management governed econom- 
ic activity. 

UstaSe (sing. , UstaSa) — From the word ustanak, meaning uprising 
or rebellion. An extremist Croatian movement that began as 
an interwar terrorist organization, then adopted fascist guide- 
lines and collaborated with German and Italian occupation 
forces in World War II. The movement's genocidal practices 
against Serbs, Muslims, Jews, and other minorities in Croa- 
tia and Bosnia and Hercegovina caused animosities that last- 
ed long after the war. 

World Bank — Informal name used to designate a group of three 
affiliated international institutions: the International Bank for 
Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), providing loans to 
developing countries; the International Development Associ- 
ation (IDA), providing credits to the poorest developing coun- 
tries on easier terms than the IBRD; and the International 
Finance Corporation (IFC), supplementing IBRD activity by 
loans to stimulate private enterprise in less developed coun- 
tries. The three institutions are owned by the governments of 
the countries that subscribe their capital. To participate in the 
World Bank group, member states must first belong to the In- 
ternational Monetary Fund (IMF — q v.). 



abortion, 69, 118 
Adria Pipeline, 147 
Adriatic Coastal Highway, 150 
Adriatic Fleet, 248 

Adriatic Sea, 63-64; oil exploration in, 

Aegean Sea, 64 

Afghanistan, Soviet invasion of, 56 
age, average, 68 

aging, demographic, 68, 88, 90, 102 

agricultural infrastructure, 145 

agricultural output, 48 

agricultural products, 144-45; export of, 
145; import of, 145; livestock as, 145 

agriculture, 144-46; collectivization of, 
46, 90, 125; collectivization abandoned, 
48, 127, 132; combines, 144; coopera- 
tives, 144; decentralized, 132; develop- 
ment of, 125-26; inefficiencies in, 146; 
in Macedonia, 144; modernization of, 
91; as percentage of GMP, 144; pri- 
vately owned farms, 144; reform of, 
32-33; in Slovenia, 144; state farms, 

Agrokomerc scandal, 183, 209 
air force, 246-48; aircraft, 246-47; army 
transport by, 247; conscripts, 246; in- 
signia, 263; missions, 246; organization 
of, 246; personnel, 246; pilot training 
program, 247; ranks, 262; sites defend- 
ed, 247-48; support, 246, 248; uni- 
forms, 265; weaknesses in, 247; 
weapons, 246-47 
airports, 151 

Albania, 233; creation of independent, 
27; as external threat, 234; intervention 
in Kosovo, 220; Italian occupation of, 
37; and Kosovan Albanians, xxviii; ter- 
ritorial disputes with, 29; in World 
War I, 28; in World War II, 229 
Albanian language, 73; education in, 115 
Albanian-Macedonian tensions, 210 
Albanian Party for Democratic Prosperi- 
ty, xxxvii 

Albanians (see also Serbian- Albanian con- 
flict), 7, 30, 87-88; birth rates of, 69, 
88; culture of, 87; demographic aging 
of, 88; demonstrations by, 53, 175, 254, 

256-57, 283; employment, 88; families, 
88; intellectuals, 97; in Kosovo, xxvii, 
212, 256-57; literacy rate of, 88, 114; 
in Macedonia, 223; as percentage of 
population, 70; population of, 87; 
population distribution of, 87; popula- 
tion growth of, 71; religion of, 87, 107; 
secret police persecution of, 52, 275; 
separatist movement, 203; slaughter of 
Jews and Serbs by, 39; students, 88; in 
YPA, 254, 256; women, 88 

Albanian- Yugoslav relations, 204 

alcoholism, 92 

Aleksandar (King), xxv, 32; assassination 
of, 35; attempted assassination of, 31 
Alexander the Great, 4 
Algeria, 156, 160 

Allied powers: military assistance from, 

Amnesty International, 279 
Andrid, Ivo, 48 

Angola, 160; military exchanges with, 275 
Antifascist Council for the National Liber- 
ation of Yugoslavia (AVNOJ), 40-41, 

Arafat, Yasir, 220 

armed forces (see also Territorial Defense 
Forces; Yugoslav People's Army; see 
also under individual services): insignia, 

262- 63; and internal security, 282; lan- 
guages used in, 259; organization of, 
227; and party, 241-43; political in- 
fluence of, 241-42; ranks, 262-63; role 
of, in Serbia, 227; and society, 253-57; 
supreme commander of, 239; Territori- 
al Defense Forces, 237; uniforms, 262, 

263- 65; Yugoslav People's Army, 237 
Army Law (1982), 262 

artists, 12, 97 

Association for a Yugoslav Democratic 
Initiative, 207 

Australia: as supplier of agricultural 
products, 146, 156 

Austria (see also Austrian Empire; Austro- 
Hungarian Empire), xl, 233; annexed 
by Germany, 36; Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina annexed by, 10, 21, 22, 24-25; 
dominance of Serbs by, 19; dominance 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

of Slovenes by, 9; exports to, 156; in 
French Empire, 9, 14; influence of, on 
Bosnia and Hercegovina, 24; relations 
with, 234; territorial disputes with, 29 
Austria-Hungary. See Austro- Hungarian 

Austrian Empire (see also Austria; Austro- 
Hungarian Empire), 6, 8; abolition of 
serfdom in, 9, 15, 80; formation of 
Dual Monarchy, 10, 15, 21; revolutions 
of 1848 in, 9, 15 

Austro-Hungarian Empire (see also Aus- 
tria; Austrian Empire), xxix, 7, 15, 27, 
206, 228; annexation of Bosnia and 
Hercegovina by, 16, 24-25; control of 
Croatia by, 16; control of Dalmatia by, 
15; in World War I, 27 

automobiles, 146, 150 

automotive industry, 141-43; exports by, 

Avars, 6, 7, 11 

AVNOJ. See Antifascist Council for the 
National Liberation of Yugoslavia 

Axis occupation of Yugoslavia, 230-31; 
as drain on military campaigns, 
230-3 1 ; execution of civilians during, 

Axis powers; accommodation to, 229; in- 
vasion of Yugoslavia by, 37, 230-31 

Balearic, Vladimir, 50 

balance of payments, 155; maintenance 
of positive, 162 

Balkan Entente, 34, 35 

Balkan Mountains, 63 

Balkans: dominated by Serbia, 17; frag- 
mentation in, 172; Turkish conquest of, 8 

Balkan wars, 7, 26-28, 220; First, 27, 
228; Second, 27, 86, 228-29 

ban, 11, 16, 36, 42 

banking, 136-38; audits in, 137; central 
banking system, 137; collapse of, xxxiv; 
commercial, 137; financial assets, 137; 
financial institutions, 137; internal 
banks, 137-38; reform failure, xxxiii 

banovina, 33 

Baptist Church, 107 

Bar, 64 

Bardylis, 4 

Basic Law on the Management of State 
Economic Enterprises by Working Col- 
lectives (1950), 127 

Basic Law on Relations Between Parents 
and Children (1962), 97-98 

basic organization of associated labor 
(BOAL), 93, 130, 179 

Belgium: exports to, 143 

Belgrade, 231 

Belgrade-Bar Railroad, 64 

Belgrade Conference of Nonaligned Na- 
tions (1961), 216 

Belgrade Declaration, 49, 218, 268 

Belgrade demonstrations, xxix-xxx, xxxi 

"Belgrade Six," 212, 213 

Berlin, Treaty of (1878), 21, 24, 26 

Bihac, 40 

birth rates, 69 

Black Hand, 27 

Blajvajs, Janez, 9 

Blue Book (Pasic), 193 

BOAL. See basic organization of associat- 
ed labor 

Bogomilism, 22-23, 83 

Bogomils, 23-24 

Bohemia, 10 

Bolshevik Revolution (1917), 39 

Boskovic, Rudjer, 12 

Bosna River: hydroelectric power on, 149 

Bosnia (see also Bosnia and Hercegovina), 
22-25; annexed by Austria, 10, 21 , 22, 
24-25; Austrian influence on, 24, 83; 
coal mining in, 147; competition of, for 
Dalmatia, 12; Islamic culture in, 83; 
Muslim fundamentalism in, 53, 83-86; 
noncommunist government of, xxvii; 
revolts in, against Turkish occupation, 
24; Turkish occupation of, 23-24; 
zadruga in, 98 

Bosnia and Hercegovina (see also Bosnia; 
Hercegovina), xxiv, 175, 190, 208; 
agriculture in, 145; annexed by Aus- 
tria, 16, 24-25, 83; birth rates in, 69; 
commitment to unity in, 222; com- 
munist party in, 200; constitutional 
amendments instigated by, 175; Croats 
in, 78; demographic age in, 68; EC 
recognition requested by, xli; elections 
in, to State Presidency, 187; ethnic dis- 
tribution in, 71, 209; German occupa- 
tion of, 37; independence declared by, 
xxxv; in Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, 
and Slovenes, 29; medieval history of, 
23; mining in, 149; Muslim Slavs in, 
82-83; opposition to Serbia, xxviii; as 
point of contention in Serbian-Croatian 



conflict (1991), xxxvi, xxxix; political 
issues in, 209-10; progressive politics 
in, 209; religion in, 108; Serbianiza- 
tion campaign in, 202; Serbs in, xli, 74, 

Bosnians: history of, 7 

Brioni decisions, 48-49 

Britain: cooperation agreements for 
producing materiel, 272; exports to, 
143; imports from, 156; materiel from, 
250, 267; military assistance from, 231; 
mistrust of, 35; in World War I, 27; in 
World War II, 40 

Brotherhood and Unity Highway, 150 

Bucin, Nenad, 208 

Buda, 12 

Bulatovic, Momir, xxxviii, xli 
Bulgaria, 27; Macedonians in, 86; 
Macedonian relations with, xxxvii; oc- 
cupation of Yugoslavia by, 37, 86, 229; 
relations with, 234; Serbian relations 
with, 22; territorial disputes with, 29, 
30, 33, 34, 210, 219-20, 228, 234; 
treaty with (1937), 35; in World War 
I, 28 

Bulgarianization, 39 

Bulgarian language, 73; education in, 115 

Bulgarian Orthodox Church, 25; schools 

established by, 86 
Bulgars, 7, 30 
bureaucracy, 94-95 
Byzantine Empire, 6, 11, 17 
Byzantium (see also Constantinople), 5 

Calvinist Reformed Church, 107 
Canada: as supplier of agricultural 

products, 146 
Carantania, 7 
Carinthia, 8 
Carniola, 8, 10 
Carnojevic, Arsenije III, 18 
Carpathian Mountains, 63 
Carter, Jimmy, 219 
Castro, Fidel, 56, 217 
Cathedral of St. Sava, 110 
Catholic Church. See Roman Catholic 

Celts, 4 

censorship, 214-15; loosened, 214; post- 
publication, 214 
Central Powers, 27-28 

Cetnici, 39, 40, 231; defeat of, 42; mili- 
tary assistance to, 231 ; punishment of, 
44; resistance of occupiers by, 229-30; 
rivalry of, with Partisans, 40, 230; role 
of, 230 

Cetnik Detachments of the Yugoslav 

Army of the Fatherland. See Cetnici 
Charlemagne, 7 

Chemical Industry (Pancevo), 143 
Chemical Production Industry (Prahovo), 

chemicals industry, 140, 143-44; exports 

by, 143 
China, 217 

Christianity, 11; conflicts with Islam, 106; 

legalized, 5; Serbs converted to, 16 
Christians: persecution of, 5, 6 
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day 

Saints, 107 
civil defense, 259 
civil rights, 174 

climate, 64-67; of Dalmatia, 67; of Mon- 
tenegro, 64-67 

coal industry: production, 147; waste in, 

Coalition of People's Accord, 208 
collectivization. See agriculture 
Comecon. See Council for Mutual Eco- 
nomic Assistance 
Cominform: economic blockade by, 46, 
126, 232; expulsion of Yugoslavia from, 
46, 123, 173; founded, 45 
Comintern, 230 

Committee for the De*ense of Freedom 
of Thought and Expression, 213 

Committee for the Protection of Artistic 
Freedom, 212 

Committee for the Protection of Human- 
ity and the Environment, 212-13 

communes, 190-91; chambers in, 191; 
defined, 190; functions of, 190 

Communist Party of the Soviet Union 
(CPSU), 49 

Communist Party of Yugoslavia (CPY) 
(see also League of Communists of Yu- 
goslavia), 131, 193; attempts to sup- 
press, 31; economic plans of, 124; 
membership, 95-96; Montenegrins in, 
77; orthodox, in exile, 280; in World 
War II, 39, 230 

communities of interest, 132, 152; for 
health care, 117; levies by, 136; for so- 
cial welfare, 1 18 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Concordat, 35 

confederation, xli; arguments for, xxiii- 
xxiv; obstacles to dividing, xxiv 

Confederation of Trade Unions of Yugo- 
slavia, 198 

conscientious objectors, 257 

conscription: exemption from, 257-58; 
number eligible for, 257; term of ser- 
vice for, 257 

conscripts, 256; backgrounds of, 259; 
reliability of, xxxii 

Constantine, 5 

Constantinople (see also Byzantium), 6 

constituent assembly, 31, 42, 43 

Constitutional Court, 189 

constitution of 1931, 34 

constitution of 1946, 173; amended, 48 

constitution of 1953, 173-74; decentrali- 
zation under, 173-74 

constitution of 1963, 50, 174-75; amend- 
ments to, 53, 175; civil and human 
rights under, 1 74; decentralization un- 
der, 174; market socialism in, 129; 
recentralizaton under, 174; rotation of 
office, 174 

Constitution of 1974, 54-56, 182, 189; 
amendments to, xxxv, 180, 183, 203; 
civil rights under, 276-77; decentrali- 
zation under, xxvi, 204; defense 
production under, 270; defense require- 
ments, 240; economic reorganization 
in, 130, 200; ethnic categories under, 
70, 87, 88; Federal Assembly under, 
184; Federal Executive Council under, 
185; freedom of speech, 212, 276; 
government spending in, 136; health 
care under, 117-18; individual rights 
under, 177, 276; internal security un- 
der, 282; Kosovan autonomy under, 
xxviii; languages under, 72-73, 259; 
LCY under, 192; recentralization un- 
der, 177; Serbian control limited in, 
203; socialist self-management under, 
131, 179, 191; SAWPY under, 197; 
State Presidency under, 177, 187-89; 
TND doctrine in, 235; trade unions un- 
der, 198 

Conversations with Stalin (Djilas), 49 
Corfu, Declaration of, 28 
Cosic, Dobrica, 213; repression of, 211 
Council for Civil Defense, 259 
Council for Mutual Economic Assistance 
(Comecon), 46; observer status in, 159; 

trade with, 157-58, 159-60 
Council for National Defense, 239 
Council for the Protection of the Constitu- 
tional Order, 282 
Council for Territorial Defense, 240, 252 
Council of the Confederation, 198 
Counterreformation, 8, 13, 113 
court system, 189-90; Constitutional 
Court, 189; judges in, 279; military, 
189, 279; procedures, 174; regular, 
189; Supreme Court, 189, 190, 279 
CPSU. See Communist Party of the Soviet 

CPY. See Communist Party of Yugoslavia 
crime, political, 276; prisoners, 279; sen- 
tence for, 278; verbal, 277-78 
criminal code, federal, 189, 277 
"Critical Analysis of the Functioning of 
the Political System of Socialist Self- 
Management," 182 
Croatia, xxiii, xxiv, 6, 12, 13, 183, 205; 
abortion laws in, 69; ancient peoples of, 
4; autonomy for, 36, 78, 180; birth 
rates in, 69; coal mining in, 147; com- 
mitment to unity in, 222; communist 
party in, 193, 197, 200, 207, 208; 
Counterreformation in, 13, 113; decen- 
tralization aims of, 175; demand for 
military autonomy, 256; demographic 
age in, 68; economic activity in, 164; 
economic and political questions in, 
x); EEC membership for, xxxix, 165, 
216; ethnic distribution in, 71; ethnic 
factionalism in, 176; foreign exchange 
in, 162; German occupation of, 37, 
80, 124; guest workers from, 105; 
under Hungary, 15, 37; as independent 
nation, 11, 36; industry in, 140; infant 
mortality rate in, 68; Italy as threat to, 
32; military deployment in, 244; mul- 
tiparty elections in, 207, 223; Nagod- 
ba opposed by, 15; under Napoleon, 
14; nationalism in, xxvi, 53, 207, 240; 
noncommunist government of, xxvii; 
political culture, 223; political issues 
in, 206-9; political unrest in, 53-54, 
130, 212; population distribution in, 
78; pro-Serbian demonstrations in, 
207; religion in, 107, 108; secession 
of, xxvi, xxx, xxxiv, xxxix, 222; Serbs 
in, xxix, xxx, xxxi, xli, 74, 76, 176; 
teachers in, 114; television in, 215; 
troop deployment in, 244; union with 



Hungary, 1 1 ; zadruga in, 98 
Croatian Democratic Union, xxvii, 80, 

Croatian language, 15, 53, 80 

Croatian Militant Unity, 278 

Croatians: political uprisings by, 35, 240; 
role of, in World War II, 3 

Croatian Social Liberal Alliance, 207 

Croatian Spring, 80, 97 

Croats (see also Serbian-Croatian rivalry), 
6, 10-16, 78-80; in Bosnia and Her- 
cegovina, 210; cultural influences on, 
70; history of, 6, 70; intellectuals, 97; 
literacy rate, 1 13-14; massacre of other 
ethnic groups by, 75; migrations of, 
10-11; nationalism of, 80; as percen- 
tage of population, 70; persecution of, 
275; purged from YPA, 256; in secret 
police, 52; stereotype of, 73-74; in 
YPA, 254, 256; in World War I, 28 

Cuba, 54 

culture: under communist government, 

48; traditional, 91-92 
Cvetkovic, Dragila, 36 
Cyprus, 220 

Cyrillic alphabet, 8, 72-73 

Czech language, 73; education in, 115 

Czechoslovakia, 33, 35, 229; cooperation 
agreements for producing materiel, 
269, 272; exports to, 141, 156; imports 
from, 156; invasion of, by Warsaw 
Pact, 52, 218, 232, 233, 235; materiel 
from, 246, 267, 269; trade relations 
with, 159 

Czechs, 30 

Dalmaua, 5, 6, 11, 13, 17, 28; under Aus- 
tria, 14; climate of, 67; Counterrefor- 
mation in, 13; domination of, 11-12; 
Italian occupation of, 37; under 
Napoleon, 14; under Venice, 14 

Dalmatin, Anton, 13 

Dalmatin, Jurij, 8 

Dalmatinac, Juraj, 12 

Danilo II, 21 

Danube Basin, 5, 6 

Danube Plain, 19 

Danube River, 63, 64 

DCVH. See Democratic Community of 
Vojvodina Hungarians 

death, causes of, 116, 117 

debt, 155; rescheduled, 156 

decentralization, 50, 52, 128-29, 174, 
179, 200; and LCY, 193; in the 1950s, 
173-74; opposition to, 54 

defense: organization for, 238-40; of 
provinces and republics, 240 

Delo, 214 

Democratic Alliance of Kosovo, 206 
democratic centralism, 47, 49, 54, 97, 194 
Democratic Community of Vojvodina 

Hungarians (DCVH), 206 
Democratic Party (Serbian), 31, 34 
Demos coalition, xxvii, 202 
deutsche mark, xxxiii, 65 
Development, Federal Secretariat for, 185 
Dimitrijevic, Dragutin "Apis," 22 
dinar: convertibility of, 156; devaluations 

of, 156; revaluation of, xxxiii, 166 
Dinaric Alps, 5, 63 
Diocletian, 5 

Directions of Development of the Political Sys- 
tem of Self-Management, The (Kardelj), 

Directorate for State Security (see also 
secret police; State Security Service), 
280; purged, 280-81 

Directorate for Supply and Procurement, 

disease, 116, 117 
dissidents, 211-13, 276-78 
districts, 190 

Djerdap Hydroelectric Station, 67, 149 
Djilas, Milovan, 49, 173, 193, 212; 

repression of, 211, 215 
Djogo, Gojko, 212 
Djukanovic, Milo, xxxviii 
Djurakovic, Nijaz, 209 
Domestic Trade, Federal Secretariat for, 


Dow Chemical, 143 

drainage systems, 64 

Drina River: hydroelectric power on, 148 

DrnovSek, Janez, 184, 187 

drug use, 104 

Dual Monarchy (see also Austro- 

Hungarian Empire), 10, 15, 21 
Dubfek, Alexander, 53 
Dubrovnik, 12; under Napoleon, 14 
Dunavbrod Association, 141 
DuSan, Stefan, 17 

earthquakes, 63 

Eastern Orthodox Church (see also under 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

specific national branches), 6, 18, 30, 107, 

108-10; number of members, 108; 

persecution of priests, 108 
East Germany. See German Democratic 

EC. See European Community 
ecology, 101 

economic blockade, 46, 126, 232 

economic crisis, 163-65; and military 
spending, 266 

economic disparities, 163 

economic enterprises, 198; bankruptcy of, 

economic issues, 222 

economic planning, 128, 134-35; "in- 
dicative," 134; problems with, 134-35; 
process of, 134; "social," 134 

economic problems, 62-63, 123, 126 

economic reforms, xxvi, xxxii, xxxv, 48, 
50, 92, 180-83; attempts to block, 52, 
175; austerity measures under, 180, 
181, 182, 183; of banking, 137; com- 
ponents of, 129-30; effect on workers, 
93; and ethnic rivalries, 50, 222; goals 
of, 129, 139; under Markovic, xxxii- 
xxxiii, 123-24; of 1965, 129-30, 155; 
problems under, 51, 222 

economic reforms of 1990, 165-67; 
bankruptcy laws strengthened, 165-66; 
effects of, 166; monetary reform, 165; 
phase one, 166; phase two, 166-67; 
price controls removed, 165; resistance 
to, 166-67; wage austerity program, 
165, 182 

economy: development of, 125-26; in the 
1920s, 32-33; under German occupa- 
tion, 124; state control of, 125 

education, 113-16; church schools, 86; 
under communist government, 48; 
higher, 116; history of, 113-14; Islam- 
ic, 83; languages used in, 73, 114, 115; 
level attained, 114, 115; secular, 83; 
student-teacher ratio, 1 14-15; of wom- 
en, 83, 100, 113 

education, primary, 114-15; attendance, 
114; enrollment, 114; languages used 
in, 115; student-teacher ratio, 114 

education, secondary, 115; curriculum re- 
form in, 115; languages used in, 115; 
number of students in, 115; spending 
on, 115; student-teacher ratio in, 115 

EEC. See European Economic Com- 

EFTA. See European Free Trade As- 

Egypt, 216, 269; exports to, 160; imports 

from, 156; military exchanges with, 

275; relations with, 221 
El Alamein, Battle of, 230 
elections, multiparty, xxvii, xxxvi, 

xxxviii, 201-2, 207-8, 223 
electrical power, 91; hydroelectric, 

148-49; nuclear, 149; production of, 

146; transmission grid, 146 
emigration, 104 

emigres; assassinations of, 281-82; sub- 
versive activities of, 281 

Emona (see also Ljubljana), 6 

employment: peasant migration for, 92; 
rate, 102; of women, 100 

Energoinvest, 160 

Energoproekt, 160 

energy, 146-50; consumption, 146-47; 
generation of, 91, 146, 148-49; short- 
age of, 146 

Enlightenment: influence on Slovenian 
nationalism, 8-9; spread to Serbs, 21 

Ethiopia, 269; military exchanges with, 

ethnic composition, xxix, 70-72 
ethnic groups (see also under individual 
groups; see also South Slavs), 6-16, 
30-31 ; categories of, 70; education of, 
115; equal rights for, 71-72; histories 
of, 6-7; nationalities, 70; nations, 70, 

ethnic rivalries, xxvi; between Croats and 
Serbs, 73-74; sparked by economic re- 
form, 50 

ethnographic history, 69-70; complexities 
of, 70; of South Slavs, 69 

Europe, Eastern: relations with, 219-20; 
trade with, 44, 126, 143 

Europe, Western: credits and loans from, 
126; relations with, 221; trade with, 158 

European Community (EC), xli; cease- 
fires arranged by, xxx, xxxi, xxxix; 
recognition by, of Croatia and Slove- 
nia, xxxix-xli 

European Economic Community (EEC): 
commercial agreement with, 52, 158; 
Common Agricultural Policy of, 158: 
economic sanctions threatened by, 
xxxiv; goal of membership in, xxiii, 
xxviii, xxxiv, 158, 165, 216, 221; loan 
from, xxxiv; obstacles to membership 



in, 158-59; trade deficit with, 155 

European Free Trade Association 
(EFTA), 159, 221 

Evangelical Church, 107 

exports, 156; agricultural products, 145, 
156; automobiles, 141; chemicals, 143; 
to Comecon, 157-58; customers for, 
141,143 156; effect of dinar on, 166; 
kinds of, 156; machinery, 156; metal- 
lurgical products, 141; ships, 141; sub- 
sidies, 162-63; to Third World, 160; 
transportation equipment, 156 

extended family: under communist rule, 
99; composition of, 98; decline in size 
of, 100 

external threat: Albania as, 234; Bulgar- 
ia as, 234; Soviet Union as, 233 

family, xxiii, 97-102; laws regarding, 
97-98; patriarchal, 100; role of wom- 
en in, 100 
family planning, 69, 118 
FEC. See Federal Executive Council 
Federal Assembly (SkupStina), 31, 35, 
184-85, 189, 274; Chamber of Nation- 
alities, 174, 175; Chamber of Repub- 
lics and Provinces, 177, 184, 185, 191; 
under communist rule, 44, 47, 53, 54, 
174; courts overseen by, 189; dissolved, 
32; electoral procedure for, 177, 184, 
191, 198; Federal Chamber, 174, 177, 
184, 191; military powers, 239; multi- 
party elections for, 223; Peasant Party 
boycott of, 31; reorganized, 48; 
representatives, 184, 185; socialist self- 
management in, 177; voting in, 184-85 
Federal Executive Council (FEC), 174, 
184, 185-87, 189; advisory councils, 
187; committees in, 185; created, 48; 
criticism of, 213; foreign policy under, 
216; legislation in, 186; members of, 
185; regional split within, 186; respon- 
sibilities of, 185; rotation in, xxxv, 185; 
separation of, from party, 192 
Federal People's Assembly, 173-74; 
Chamber of Producers, 174; Federal 
Chamber, 173 
Federal Planning Commission, 125, 127 
federal public prosecutor, 282 
Federal Republic of Germany (West Ger- 
many): exports to, 156; guest workers 

in, 106; imports from, 156, 157; 
materiel from, 269; relations with, 22 1 ; 
trade with, 159 

Federation of Associations of Veterans of 
the National Liberation War (SUB- 
NOR), 199-200, 241 

Federation of Jewish Communities of Yu- 
goslavia, 1 13 

Ferdinand I, 12 

Finance, Federal Secretariat for, 185 

Finland: exports to, 141 

fishing: as percentage of GMP, 144 

Five- Year Plan, Fifth, 140, 155 

Five- Year Plan, First, 125-26; agricultur- 
al development in, 125-26; economic 
development in, 125-26; industrial de- 
velopment in, 125-26, 139; objectives 
of, 125; trade deficit, 126 

Five- Year Plan, "Perspective" (see also 
Five-Year Plan, Second), 127-28; 
mechanism of, 127; purpose of,.„127 

Five-Year Plan, Second (see also Five-Year 
Plan, "Perspective"), 126 

Five-Year Plan, Sixth, l4b 

Five-Year Plan, Third, 128-29; aban- 
doned, 128; goals of, 128 

Foreign Affairs, Federal Secretariat for, 

foreign debt, 163, 164 

foreign exchange, 162-63; allocation of 
reserves, 162; controls relaxed on, 163; 
free market system in, 162; functional 
priorities system, 162; reserves, 163, 
166; retention ratio system, 162; scar- 
city of, 162; with United States, 155, 
with Western Europe, 155 

foreign military relations, 272-73; access 
rights, 273; arms sales, 273-74, 275; 
controversy regarding, 272; military 
exchanges, 274-75; importance of, 272; 
training, 274-75; warship visits, 273 

foreign policy, 215-21; institutions, 216; 
toward Middle East, 220; in the 1920s, 
33; nonalignment in, 50, 215; oil as in- 
centive in, 83, 112; under Stojadinov- 
ic, 35 

foreign trade, 152-63; barriers, 155; with 
Cominform, 152; decline in, 155; 
deficit, 156, 157, 158; with Eastern Eu- 
rope, 126; nationalization of, 125; oil 
as influence on, 155; as percentage of 
GNP, 152; under Soviet model, 152; 
with Soviet Union, 126, 159-60; with 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

Third World, 160; trading partners, 
157-60; with United States, 155; with 
Western Europe, 155 

France, 33, 34, 229; cooperation agree- 
ments for producing materiel, 272; ex- 
ports to, 141, 143, 156; materiel from, 
267, 269; mistrust of, 35; in World War 
I, 27 

Francis I, 13 

Franciscans, 13, 

Frankish Kingdom, 6 

Franks, 7, 11 

Franz Ferdinand, 27 

Franz Joseph, 15 

freedom of speech, 1 75, 2 1 1 ; measures to 

control, 212 
French Empire: reforms under, 9 
Front for Independent Slovenia, 202 
Fund for Underdeveloped Regions, 165 

Gaj, Ljudevit, 15 

gas, natural: exploration, 140; produc- 
tion, 147 

GATT. See General Agreement on Tariffs 
and Trade 

General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 
(GATT): membership in, 51, 158 

Georgievski, Ljupco, xxxvii 

German Democratic Republic (East Ger- 
many): exports to, 143; trade relations 
with, 159 

Germanization: of Hungary, 13; of Yu- 
goslavia, 37 

Germans, 20; population growth of, 71 

Germany: as ally of Yugoslavia, 34, 35; 
annexation of Austria by, 36; economic 
links with, 8, 35; materiel from, 248, 
267; occupation of Yugoslavia by, xxv, 
37-39, 124, 229; destruction by, of Lit- 
tle Entente, 36; in World War I, 27; 
in World War II, 230, 231 

Germany (unified), xxxix, xl 

Ghana, 216 

Gligorov, Kiro, xli 

GMP. See gross material product 

GNP. See gross national product 

Goli Otok, 280 

Gorbachev, Mikhail S., xxiii, xxxi, 218, 

government: restructuring of, xxv-xxvi; 

separation of, from party, 175, 177 
government, local, 190-91; presidencies 


of, 190; structure of, 190 

government revenue and spending, 1 36; 
categories, 136; military, 266-67; tax- 
es, 136 

Great Depression, 34 

Greater Albania, xxviii 

Greater Croatia, 16 

Greater Serbia, xli 

Great Schism, 11 

Greece, 27, 231; in Balkan Entente, 34, 
216, 229, 232; exports to, 143; 
Macedonian relations with, xxxvii, 210; 
territorial disputes with, 219-20 

Greek Orthodox Church: schools estab- 
lished b>, 86 

Greeks, 7, 30; influence on eastern Adri- 
atic; influence on Macedonia, 25; 
Macedonians as, 86 

Greek trading posts, 4 

Green Plans, 146 

gross material product (GMP), 123, 130 
gross national product (GNP), 134; 
defense expenditures as percentage of, 
232, 267; foreign trade as percentage 
of, 152 
Gubec, Matija, 13 

guest workers, xxv, 62, 104-6, 160-61, 
257; demographic profile of, 105-6; dis- 
tribution of, 105; employment of 
returning, 106, 164; hard currency 
from, xxxiv, 52, 92, 128, 155, 160-61; 
number of, 104-5, 161; origins of, 104; 
peasants as, 92; as remedy for unem- 
ployment, 51-52, 130, 138, 139, 161; 
women as, 106 

Gundulic, Ivan, 12 

Gypsies, 30; education of, 89; elimination 
by UstaSe, 38; language of, 73; mas- 
sacre by Croats, 75; population of, 89 

habeas corpus, 212 
Habsburgs, 8, 12, 81 
hajduci, 18 

hard currency, xxv, 128 
Hare Krishnas, 107 

health care, 116-18; under communist 
government, 48; disparities in, xxiii, 
117; entitlements, 118; facilities, 118; 
improvements in, 117; insurance for, 
117; physician-resident ratio, 1 16, 117; 
system, 116-18; for women, 100 

Helsinki Accords, 217 


Heraclius, 1 1 

Hercegovina (see also Bosnia and Hercego- 
vina), 22-25; annexed by Austria, 10, 
21, 22, 24-25; Austrian influence on, 
24; etymology of, 23; peasant culture 
in, 91; revolts against Turkish occupa- 
tion in, 24; Turkish occupation of, 
23-24; zadruga in, 98 

Higher Naval Academy, 261 

Hitler, Adolf, 37 

Honorius III (Pope), 17 

housing, 102-3; allocation of, 103; bribes 
to obtain, 103; cost of, 103; methods 
of obtaining, 103; for migrants, 102; 
privately owned, 103; socially owned, 
103; supply of, 102-3; unplanned set- 
tlements, 104 

Hoxha, Enver, 42, 220 

Hrebeljanovic, Lazar, 17 

Hum (see also Hercegovina), 23 

human rights, 174; policies condemned 
by United States, 219; violations, 279 

Hungarian language. See Magyar lan- 

Hungarian Revolution (1956), 49 
Hungarians, 30; as percentage of popu- 
lation, 70; population growth of, 71; 
slaughter of Jews and Serbs by, 39; in 
YPA, 254 
Hungarian-Yugoslav relations, 49 
Hungary, 231; attempt to dominate Dal- 
matia, 11-12; control by, of Croatia 
and Slavonia, 15; in Dual Monarchy, 
10, 15, 21; occupation of Yugoslavia 
by, 37, 229; Magyar as official lan- 
guage of, 15; relations with, 220, 234; 
Soviet invasion of, 233; support of, for 
UstaSe, 35; territorial disputes with, 29, 
30, 33; Turkish conquest of, 8, 18; 
Turkish withdrawal from, 13; union of, 
with Croatia, 1 1 
Huns, 6, 10 

Iazov, Dmitrii, 218 
Ibar River, 67 
Illyria, 4 

Illyria, Kingdom of, 14 
Illyrian movement, 15 
Illyrian Provinces, 9, 14 
Illyrians, 4 

IMF. See International Monetary Fund 

imports, 156; of agricultural products, 
145; effect of dinar on, 166; of 
machinery, 156; suppliers, 156; of 
transportation equipment, 156; from 
Third World, 160; types of, 156 

IMRO. See Internal Macedonian Revolu- 
tionary Organization 

Independent State of Croatia (NDH), 37 

India, 160, 216, 269; military exchanges 
with, 275 

Indonesia, 216 

industrialization, xxiii, 92, 139; postwar 

policy on, 140 
industrial production, xxxiv, 123, 126, 


industrial structure, 143-44 

industry (see also under individual industries), 
139-44; automotive industry, 141-43; 
branches of, 140; chemicals, 143; coal, 
147-48; development of, 33, 125; lo- 
cation of, 140; metallurgy, 141; min- 
ing, 140; nationalization of, 125; 
problems in, 143-44; shipbuilding, 141 

inflation, xxxiv, 123, 163-64; attempt to 
control, xxxii-xxxiii, 164; under Ger- 
man occupation, 124; in late 1980s, 
163; and unemployment, 139 

infrastructure: development of, 33 

intelligentsia, 12, 52, 94-97; backgrounds 
of, 96; bureaucrats and professionals as, 
94-95; as catalysts for nationalism, 94; 
under communist rule, 95; education 
of, 96-97; as party members, 196, 222; 
precommunist, 94; Serbs as, 95; tech- 
nical, 97 

Intelsat. See International Telecommuni- 
cations Satellite Organization 

Internal Affairs, Federal Secretariat for, 

Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Or- 
ganization (IMRO), 26 

Internal Macedonian Revolutionary 
Organization-Democratic Party for Na- 
tional Unity, xxxvii 

internal security, 275-84; and dissidents, 
276, 279; organization of, 282-83; and 
political crimes, 276, 279; as threat to 
national security, 275; used against eth- 
nic groups, 275 

internal security forces, 280-82; assassi- 
nations by, 281-82; control over, 281, 
purge of, 280; responsibilities of, 280; 
YPA role in, 283-84 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

International Monetary Fund (IMF), 
xxxiii, 158, 163; loan from, xxxiv 

International Telecommunications Satel- 
lite Organization (Intelsat), 152 

Iran, 160 

Iraq: arms sales to, 274; oil supplied by, 
147, 156, 160; Swedish arms sales to, 
254, 274, 279 

Iron Gate, 63 

Islam, 30, 107, 1 12-13; Bektashi dervish- 
es, 112-13; in Bosnia, 83; conflicts with 
Christianity, 106; conversions to, 7, 23, 
83, 87, 112; education, 112, 113; Rais- 
ul Ulama, 112; relations with govern- 
ment, 112; structure of, 112 
Israel, 113, 220-21 
Istria, 4, 28, 29; coal mining in, 147 
Italian language, 73; education in, 115 
Italy, 34; cooperation agreements for 
producing materiel, 272; economic 
links with, 8, 35; exports to, 143; im- 
ports from, 156; materiel from, 248, 
267; mistrust of, 35; occupation of Yu- 
goslavia by, 37, 229; relations with, 
221; Slovenians in, 221; support of, for 
UstaSe, 35; territorial disputes with, 
29-30 , 33 , 46; trade with, 159; treaty 
with, 35; as threat to Croatia, 32; in 
World War I, 28; in World War II, 231 
Ivan of Montenegro (Prince), 18 
Ivo Lola Ribar Machine Industry, 272 
Izetbegovic, Alija, xxxvi, xli 

Jaruzelski, Wojciech, 242 
JAT. See Yugoslav Air Transport 
Jehovah's Witnesses, 107, 113 
Jelattc, Josip, 15, 80 
Jesuits, 8, 13, 19 

Jews, 30, 107, 113; elimination by Ustale, 
38; massacre by Croats, 75; population 
of, 71, 113; slaughter of, by Albanians 
and Hungarians, 39 

Joseph II, 8; language reform under, 13 

Judaism, 31 

Jugotanker, 141 

Julian Alps, 4, 63, 150 

Justinian, 6 

Kadijevic, Veljko, xxxi 
Kallay, Benjamin, 24 
Kalman, 11 

Karadjordje Petrovic, 19 
Karadjordjevic, Aleksandar, 22 
Karadjordjevic, Petar, 22 
Karadjordjevic Dynasty, 19, 28, 108 
Karadzic, Vuk, 21-22, 75 
Kardelj, Eduard, 50, 174, 178, 179, 211 
Karlowitz, Treaty of (1699), 13 
Khrushchev, Nikita S., 49; denounce- 
ment of Stalin by, 49; relations with 
Yugoslavia repaired by, 217, 232 
Khuen-Hedervary, Karoly, 16 
Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slo- 
venes (see also Kingdom of Yugoslavia), 
xxv, 29, 229 
Kingdom of Yugoslavia (see also Kingdom 
of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes), 

xxv, 29-31, 75, 108; dissolved, 43; 
Montenegrins in, 77 

Knin, 207 

Konzul, Stipan, 13 

Kopitar, Jernej, 9 

Korosec, Antun, 29, 82 

Kosovo, xxiv, 43, 52, 212, 220; agricul- 
ture in, 145; Albanian demonstrations 
in, 53, 97, 175, 223, 256-57, 278; Al- 
banians in, xxvii-xxviii, 76, 87, 204, 
212, 234; autonomy for, 177-78, 182, 
190; clash of, with Serbs, 88, 106; coal 
mining in, 148; Croats in, 78; com- 
munist party in, 196, 197, 200, 204, 
206; disputes over, 7; economic activi- 
ty in, 164; economy of, xxvii, 200; edu- 
cation in, 115; employment of women 
in, 100; ethnic distribution in, 71; eth- 
nic strife in, xxvii-xxviii, 213, 277, 283; 
guest workers from, 105; industry in, 
141; infant mortality rate in, 68; Italian 
occupation of, 37; literacy rate, 115; 
mining in, 149; mortality rate in, 68; 
Muslim Slavs in, 83; nationalism in, 

xxvi, xxvii; peasant culture in, 91; po- 
litical issues in, 204-6; political unrest 
in, 130, 184; population in, 76; popu- 
lation density in, 69; population distri- 
bution in, 77; population growth rate 
in, 68; religion in, 107, 110; separatist 
movement in, 203, 204, 214; Serbian 
hegemony in, 183, 203; Serbianization 
campaign in, 202, 204; Serbs in, xxvii, 
74, 76, 205; struggle for domination of, 
76; unemployment in, 94, 139; zadru- 
ga in, 98 

Kosovo-Metojiha, 204 



Kosovo Polje, Battle of, 17, 23, 228 
Kotor, Gulf of, 12, 64 
Kragujevac, 40 

Krajgher Commission, 163, 182, 266; 

report of, 180-81 
Krajina Serbian Autonomous Region, 

xxix, xxx 
Krakow, 11 
KrSko, 149 

Kuian, Milan, xxvii, xli, 201, 202 
Kuharic, Franjo Cardinal, 111 
Kulin, Ban, 22-23 
kumstvo: and zadruga, 99-100 

Ladislas of Naples, 12 

landownership, 133 

land reform, 44, 48, 125 

language issues, 8, 31; Croatian-Hungar- 
ian, 14-15 

languages (see also under individual lan- 
guages), xxiii, 72-73; in armed forces, 
259; minority, 73; official, 72 

Laszlo I, 11 

law codes, 189-90 

Law on Associated Labor (1976), 93, 130, 
131, 152, 179 

Law on Hostile Propaganda, 277; applied 
against guest workers, 277 

LCY. See League of Communists of Yu- 

League of Arab States, 221 

League of Communists of Bosnia and 
Hercegovina, 200 

League of Communists of Croatia, 193, 
197, 200, 208; conflicts in, 207 

League of Communists of Kosovo, 200, 
204, 206; purges in, 196, 197, 204 

League of Communists of Macedonia, 

xxxvii, 200 

League of Communists of Montenegro, 

xxxviii, 200, 208 

League of Communists of Serbia, xxvii', 

182, 193, 197, 200, 203 
League of Communists of Slovenia (see 

also Party of Democratic Renewal), 

193, 195, 197, 200, 201 
League of Communists of Vojvodina, 

197, 200 

Leagu- of Communists of Yugoslavia 
(LCY) (see also Communist Party of Yu- 
goslavia), 47, 49, 54, 131, 171, 179, 
181, 192-97; adjustments to, 193; Cen- 

tral Committee, 195-96, 241; centrali- 
zation in, 180; under Constitution, 192; 
debate within, 182; decentralization of, 
176, 179, 197; dismantled, xxvi, xxvii; 
erosion of power of, 192; Executive 
Bureau, 176; foreign policy under, 216; 
founded, 193; fragmentation of, 172, 
194, 202; membership, 93-94, 96, 192, 
196, 222, 241; military influence in, 
227, 241; power of, 178, 192; Presidi- 
um, 176, 179, 195; procedures of, 195; 
purges in, 280; reform of, 194; reform 
under, 193-94; replaced, xxiv; separa- 
tion of, from government, 175, 177, 
184; structure of, 195; trade union offi- 
cials in, 135 

League of Communists of Yugoslavia- 
Movement for Yugoslavia, xxxii 

League of Journalists of Yugoslavia, 2 1 3 

League of Nations, 33, 35 

Leopold II, 13 

Libya, 83, 112; military exchanges with, 
275; oil supplied by, 147, 156, 160; 
Swedish arms sales to, 254, 274, 279 

life expectancy, 68 

Linhart, Anton, 9 

literacy rate, xxiii, 113-14, 115 

literature: Macedonian, 86; Serbian, 21 

Little Entente, 33, 35; destroyed by Ger- 
many, 36 

living conditions, 48 

living standards, 123, 163, 164 

Ljubljana, 8, 9, 10 

local militia forces, 283 

Lonfar, Budimir, 221 

London, Treaty of (1913), 27 

London, Treaty of (1915), 28, 29 

Long-Term Economic Stabilization Pro- 
gram (1982), 163, 180, 182, 187, 266 

Luxembourg, 143 

MAAG. See United States Military As- 
sistance Advisory Group 

Macedonia, xxiv, 25-26, 43; agriculture 
in, 144, 145; Albanian demonstrations 
in, 53, 175; Albanians in, xxxvii, 87, 
210; ancient peoples of, 4, 7, 25; birth 
rates in, 69; Bulgar rule of, 25-26, 37, 
234; Byzantine rule of, 25-26; commit- 
ment to unity in, 222; communist party 
in, xxxvii, 200; culture of, 87; demo- 
graphic age in, 68; demonstrations in, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

xxxvii; desire of, for decentralization, 
175; EC recognition requested by, xli; 
economic activity in, 164; economic 
condition of, xxxvi-xxxvii; economic 
reform in, 51 ; ethnic distribution in, 7 1 ; 
ethnic tension in, xxxvii, 210; Europe- 
an peacekeeping forces in, 26; indepen- 
dence declared by, xxxv; industry in, 
140; infant mortality rate in, 68; lega- 
cy of Ottoman rule in, 61; mining in, 
149-50; multiparty elections in, xxxvii; 
nationalism in, xxxvii, 210; nuclear 
power station in, 149; opposition to 
Serbia, xxviii; Ottoman rule of, 86; Ot- 
tomans d. iven from, 228; peasant cul- 
ture in, 91; per capita earnings, 
xxxvi-xxxvii; political issues in, 
210-11; population growth rate in, 68; 
purges in, 54; rebellion in, against 
Turkish rule, 26; religion in, 86, 107; 
topography of, 63; unemployment in, 
xxxvi; zadruga in, 98 

Macedonian language, 72-73, 87; edu- 
cation in, 115 

Macedonian Orthodox Church, 53, 87, 
107, 108, 110, 220 

Macedonians, 86-87; armed resistance 
by, 87; in Bulgaria, 86; cultural in- 
fluences on, 70; ethnic identity of, 86; 
history of, 70; as percentage of popu- 
lation, 70; population distribution of, 
86; in YPA, 254 

Macek, Vlatko, 34, 35, 36, 38 

machine-building industry, 140 

Magyarization, 13, 16; of Croats, 78, 80; 
of Serbs, 21 

Magyar language, 13, 15, 73; education 
in, 115 

Maribor, 8 

market economy, 184 

market reform: resistance to, 181 

market socialism, 50, 129; market system, 

Markovic, Ante, 207, 219; criticism of, 
183-84; economic reform plans of, 123, 
158, 223; resignation of, xxxix; strikes 
as threat to, 182; vote of no confidence 
against, xxxix 

materiel, military: from Britain, 250, 267; 
from Czechoslovakia, 246, 267, 269; 
from France, 267, 269; from Germa- 
ny, 248, 250, 267; from Italy, 248, 267; 
obsolete, 266; from Poland, 269; 

procurement, 266, 267-69, 270-71; 
from Romania, 244, 269; from Soviet 
Union, 244, 245, 246-47, 250, 269; 
from Sweden, 246, 269, 272; from 
Switzerland, 246, 269; types of, 
244-45; from United States, 244, 246, 
250, 267; from West Germany, 269 
materiel, military, domestically produced, 
249, 266, 269-72, 269-72; armored 
combat vehicle, 271 ; cooperation agree- 
ments for, 269, 272; fighter aircraft, 
271; helicopters, 272; license agree- 
ments for, 271-72; obstacles in, 270; for 
sale, 270; as source of hard currency, 

Matica Hrvatska, 53-54, 176, 207 

May 3 Shipyard, 141 

media, 213-15; censorship of, 214-15; 
criticism in, 213; information allowed 
in, 213; law regarding, 213; political 
sponsorship of, 214; self-management 
of, 214 

Mediterranean Sea, 221 

merchant marine, 151 

MeJic, Stipe, xxxix 

metallurgy industry, 140, 141; exports by, 

Metal Semifinished Products Industry, 

Methodist Church, 107 

Middle East: arms sales in, 274; military 
exchanges with, 275; policy toward, 220 

migration: of peasants to cities, xxiii, 90 

Mihajlov, Mihajlo, 211 

Mihajlovic, Draia, 39, 40, 229, 280; ex- 
ecution of, 44 

Mikulic, Branko, 182, 183 

military budget, xxxii, xxxix, 266-67; 
cuts, 266; increases, 267; as percentage 
of GNP, 232, 267; as proportion of 
government expenditures, 267 

military dictatorship: possibility of, 

military doctrine {see also Total National 
Defense), 235-36 

military education, 259-61; higher acade- 
mies, 260-61; higher schools, 260; 
premilitary drills, 259 

Military Frontier Province, 12 

military life, 261-62; average workweek, 
261; benefits, 262; living conditions, 
261 ; for officers, 262; right to complain, 



military prosecutor, 279 

military spending: and economic crisis, 
266; decrease in, xxxii 

military strategy and tactics, 236-37 

military training, 259-61; advanced, 260; 
basic, 260; economic constraints on, 
260; for reservists, 261; specialist, 260; 
technical, 260; in United States, 268 

Milosevic, Slobodan, xxvi, xxviii, xxx, xl, 
197, 203, 204, 206; criticism of, xxix, 
213; government of, 214; Serbian 
demonstrations against, xxix-xxx 

mining, 144. 149 

Mladina, 214 

modernization, 89-90; of agriculture, 91; 
peasants and, 89 

Mohacs, Battle of, 12, 14 

Molve gas field, 147 

Montenegrins, 53, 76-78; cultural values 
of, 77; cultural influences on, 70; dis- 
tribution of, 76-77; ethnicity of, 77; 
families of, 77; in leadership positions, 
77-78; history, 6-7, 70; and Ottoman 
Turks, 77; as percentage of population, 
70; political divisions among, 77; sub- 
versive activities of, 281; in YPA, 254 

Montenegrin Uprising, xxxviii 

Montenegro, xxiv, xxvii, 16-22, 27, 43, 
64, 182, 189; Albanians in, 87; anti- 
Albanian sentiment in, 208; birth rates 
in, 69; climate of, 64-67; commitment 
to unity in, 222; communist party in, 
xxxviii, 200, 208; Croats in, 78; demo- 
graphic age in, 68; economic reform in, 
51 , 52; ethnic distribution in, xxxvi, 71 ; 
guest workers from, 105; industry in, 
78, 140; Italian occupation of, 37; in 
Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slo- 
venes, 29; multiparty elections in, 
xxxvii-xxxviii; Muslim Slavs in, 83; 
nuclear power station in, 149; opposi- 
tion of, to Turks, 18; political conser- 
vatism in, 50, 52, 208; political issues 
in, 208; population of, 76-77; progres- 
sive politics in, 208; religion in, 107; 
Russian ties with, 19; State Presiden- 
cy elections in, 187; support of, for Ser- 
bia, 203-4; in World War I, 28; zadruga 
in, 98 

Morava River, 150 

mortality rate, 68, 116, 117; causes of 

death, 116, 117; infant, 68 
Mostar, 24 

mountains, 63-64; composition of, 63 

mountain troops, 265 

multiparty elections, xxvii, xxxvi, xxxviii, 

201-2, 207-8, 223 
Muslims: massacre of, 18; nationalism, 


Muslim Slavs, 82-86, 107; Albanians as, 
112; in Bosnia and Hercegovina, 82, 
112, 210; cultural influences on, 70; 
education of women, 113; history of, 
70, 83; in Kosovo, 112; kumstvo among, 
99; in Macedonia, 112; origins of, 83; 
as percentage of population, 70; in Ser- 
bia, 112; in YPA, 254 

Mussolini, Benito, 35 

Nagodba, 15, 16 
Nagy, Imre, 49 
Napoleon, 9, 14 

Nasser, Gamal Abdul, 50, 216, 220 
National Bank of Yugoslavia, xxxiii, 137, 

162, 166 
National Council, 29 
National Defense, Secretariat for, xxx, 
239, 259; organization of, 239-40; su- 
pervisory duties of, 239-40 
National Defense Law (1969), 235 
nationalism, xxvi, 54, 101, 227-28 
nationalist conflict, 3-4; and government 

position, 175 
nationalist movements, 253; YPA sup- 
pression of, 256-57; violence used by, 

nationalities (see also under individual ethnic 
groups), 195; defined, 70 

nationalization: of industry, 125; of na- 
tional resources, 125 

National Liberation War of 1941-45 (see 
also World War II), 228 

national security: precautions against 
Soviet invasion, 53, 244 

national unity, 3, 179; Tito as source of, 

nations (see also under individual ethnic 
groups), 70, 73-90; defined, 70 

NATO. See North Atlantic Treaty Or- 

natural gas: exploration, 140; production, 

navy, 248-50; air force support for, 246, 
247, 248; conscripts in, 248; craft oper- 
ated by, 248-50; domestic production 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

of craft by, 249; insignia, 263; ranks, 
262-63; sailors in, 248; support of army 
operations by, 260; surface combatants 
of, 248; uniforms, 263, 265 

Nazis, 228; Cetnici collaboration with, 
40; defeat of, 42 

NDH. See Independent State of Croatia 

Nedic, Milan, 39 

Nehru, Jawaharlal, 50, 216 

Nemanja Dynasty, 17 

Neretva River, 64; hydroelectric power 
on, 148 

Netherlands: exports to, 143 

New Class, The (Djilas), 49 

NiS, 5 

Ni§ Electronics Industry, 160 
Njegos Dynasty, 29 
Nkrumah, Kwame, 216 
Nonaligned Movement, 54-56; 1979 

Conference of, 56, 123, 232; arms sales 

in, 274; change in principles of, 217; 

founding principles of, 216; role in, 

215, 217 

nonalignment, 49-50, 216-17; declared, 

216; end of, xli 
Normans, 11 

North Africa: arms sales in, 274; military 
exchanges with, 275 

North Atlantic Treaty Organization 
(NATO), 47, 221, 233, 274; possibili- 
ty of war with Warsaw Pact, 235 

north-south split, 61 

Norway: exports to, 141 

Novi Pazar, 21 

Obradovic, Dositej, 21-22, 75 
Obrenovic, Aleksandar, 22 
Obrenovic, Mihajlo, 21 
Obrenovic, Milan, 21-22 
Obrenovic, Milos, 19-20 
Obrenovic Dynasty, 19-20 
Octavian, 5 

officers, military: benefits, 262; commis- 
sioned, 258; education, 260-61; insig- 
nia for, 262-63; party membership 
necessary for, 241; pay, 262; promo- 
tions, 262; service obligation for, 260; 
uniforms for, 265 

Ohrid, Lake, 4 

oil: exploration, 140, 147; as influence on 
foreign trade, 155, 220; need for, 83, 
112, 217; price increase, 131, 139; 

processing, 143, 146; suppliers of, 147, 

opsline, 71 
Ostrogoths, 6 

Otranto, Strait of, 234, 248 
Otto I, 7 

Ottoman Empire, xxix, 7, 12, 17, 19, 24, 
25, 27, 228; conversion to Islam under, 
112; legacy of, 61 ; occupation of Alba- 
nia by, 87; occupation of Bosnia and 
Hercegovina by, 78, 83; occupation of 
Serbia by, 17, 18, 19, 75, 76; occupa- 
tion of Slavonia by, 78 

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO): 

support for, 216, 220-21 
Pannonian Basin, 147 
Pannonian Plains, 64, 144 
pan-Slavism, 10 
Paraga, Dobroslav, 219 
Paris, 8 

Paris Peace Conference, 29 

parties, local, xxvii, 196-97 

Partisans, 37, 39, 199, 239; Allied sup- 
port for, 41 ; execution of suspected col- 
laborators, 44, 62; membership role in 
career success, 62, 96, 173; military as- 
sistance to, 231 ; military campaigns of, 
40-41; Montenegrins in, 77; naval 
operations of, 248; rivalry of, with Cet- 
nici, 40, 230; Stalin's objections to, 45; 
uprisings by, 40 

Party Congress, 194; Fifth, 46; Four- 
teenth, 194; goals of, 194, 195; Sixth, 
47, 173, 193; Tenth, 54; Thirteenth, 
182, 183, 241; Twelfth, 180, 182 

Party of Democratic Renewal (see also 
League of Communists of Slovenia), 

PaSic, Najdan, 182, 193 

PaSic, Nikola, 28, 31, 32 

Pavelic, Ante, 34, 38, 39 

Pavle (Prince), 35, 36, 37 

Peasant Party (Croatian), 29, 31, 43; boy- 
cott of Federal Assembly, 31 

peasants: Croatian, 78-80; demograph- 
ic age of, 90; employment of, 92, 123; 
farms of, 90; under German occupa- 
tion, 124; as guest workers, 92; living 
conditions of, 90-91; migration to 
cities, 90, 92, 99, 102, 139; as party 
members, 95-96, 1%; pensions for, 90; 



population of, 90; traditional culture 
among, 91-92 
pensioners, 101-2; and demographic ag- 
ing, 102; social services for, 102 
Pentecostal Church of Christ, 107 
People's Front (see also Socialist Alliance 
of Working People of Yugoslavia), 43, 
47, 197 

People's Liberation Army and Partisan 
Detachments of Yugoslavia. See Par- 

People's Liberation Front, 43 
People's Militia, 282, 283 
Petar I NjegoS, 19 

Petar II NjegoS, 21, 35, 37, 41, 77; sur- 
render of power to regency, 42 

Petroleum Industry of Zagreb, 143 

Petrovic, Danilo I of Njegol, 18 

Philip II, 4 

Pius XII (Pope), 45 

Planinc, Milka, 180 

PLO. See Palestine Liberation Organi- 

pluralism, 179 

Poland, 10; cooperation agreements for 
producing materiel, 269; exports to, 
143; trade relations with, 159 

Poles, 30 

political issues, 222 

political prisoners, 212 

poHtical problems, 62-63 

political reform, xxxiv-xxxv, 171, 195 

political structure: armed forces influence 
on, 241-42; development from below, 
171; federal, 172; stages in, 171; statu- 
tory autonomy in, 171 

politics: in the 1920s, 31-32 

Polilika, 214 

pollution, 67 

population, 67-69; average age of, 68; 

demographic aging of, 68; density, 67, 

69; ethnic distribution in, 70-71; 

growth, 68; in Kosovo, 69; in 1948, 67; 

in 1981, 67; in 1987, 67 
Populist Party, 82 
pornography, 101 
ports, 151 
Postojna Gate, 64 
Pozderac, Hamdija, 209 
Praxis: polemic in, 211; repression of, 2 1 1 
Praxis circle, 52, 211 
PreSeren, France, 9, 82 
Presidium, 176, 179, 189, 195, 196; Ex- 

ecutive Bureau of, 193; membership, 
195; nationalities apportioned in, 195; 
rotation in, xxxv, 179, 195 

Prevlaka, 149 

price controls, 135 

pricing, 135 

Princip, Gavrilo, 27 

prisons, 280 

PriStina, University of, 277 

private enterprise: policy toward, 132-33; 

restrictions on, 94; workers employed 

in, 94 

prosecutors, federal, 190 
Protestant Reformation, 8, 13, 113 
Protestants, 31, 107, 113 
Provisional Assembly, 42 
public health, 68-69 
purges, 54, 176-77, 196, 197, 203 

Radic, Stjepan, 31; assassination of, 32 
Radical Party (Serbian), 31, 43 
Radio Koper, 152 
Radovan, 12 
railroads, 150-51 
Ramet, Pedro, 200 

Rankovic, Aleksandar, xxvi, 52, 88; in- 
trigues of, 280-81; opposition to eco- 
nomic reform, 175; purged, 175, 193, 
204, 280-81; Serbianization campaign, 

RaSka, 17, 23 

recession, world, in the 1970s, 155 
Red Army, 45, 231 

Red Banner automotive plants, 141, 160 

Red Guards, 39 

reform, in the 1960s, 50-53 

regency, for Petar II, 35-36 

regional disparities, 164-65; economic, 

163; industrial, 164-65 
reign of terror, 37 

religion {see also under individual sects), 12, 
30-31, 106-13; church-state relations, 
107; and Croatian culture, 13; decline 
of belief in, 108; demography of, 107-8; 
distribution of, 107-8; as divisive fac- 
tor, 106; forced conversions, 106; free- 
dom of, 108; relaxation of restrictions 
on, 48; restrictions on, 44-45; and 
secularization, 44-45, 108 

republic assemblies: chambers in, 191 

retirees, 90 

retirement, 102 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

revolutions of 1848, 9, 15, 21 
Rhodope Massif, 63 
Rijeka, 29 
roads, 150 

Roman Catholic Church, 6, 30, 35, 107, 
110-11; Albanians in, 87; collaboration 
by, with fascists, 38-39, 111; forced 
conversion in, 106; involvement of, 
with Ustase, 39; membership, 111; op- 
position of, to communist government, 
44; preservation of Croatian cultural 
heritage in, 78; relations of, with 
government, 111; religious resurgence 
in, 83, 111; in Slovenia, 82; structure 
of, 111 

Roman Empire: control of Balkan Penin- 
sula by, 5; culture of, 5, 11; division 
of, 5, 6; legacy of, 5; religion of, 5 

Romania, 27, 33, 229, 231; in Balkan En- 
tente, 34, 229; cooperation agreements 
for producing materiel, 269; Croats in, 
78; materiel from, 144; relations with, 

Romanian language, 73; education in, 

Romanian Orthodox Church, 108 
Romanians, 30 
Roman-Macedonian wars, 5 
Romany language, 73 
rotation of office, xxxv, 174, 179, 180, 

187, 195; nationalities balanced by, 185 
royal dictatorship, 33-34; declaration of, 

32; popular opinion of, 33-34 
Rupel, Dimitrij, xl 

Russia {see also Soviet Union): involve- 
ment of, in Balkans, 19; in World War 
I, 28, 28 

Russian language: education in, 115 
Russians, as minority, 30 
Russo-Turkish War (1878), 25 
Ruthenian language, 73 
Ruthenians, as minority, 30 

Sabor, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 36 
St. Sava Nemanja, 17, 18, 108 
St. Vitus Day. See Vidovdan 
Salonika, 28 

San Stefano, Treaty of (1878), 21, 25-26 
Sarajevo, 27; security for 1984 Winter 

Olympics in, 282 
Sarajevo-Ploie rail line, 150 

Sarmatians, 10, 16 
Saudi Arabia, 112 
Sava River, 67 

SAWPY. See Socialist Alliance of Work- 
ing People of Yugoslavia 

secretariats, federal {see under specific func- 
tions, e.g., Finance, Federal Secretariat for) 

secret police {see also Directorate for State 
Security): dismantled, xxvi; nationalists 
pursued by, 278; purged, 52; under 
Rankovic, 52; subversive elements neu- 
tralized by, 282 

self-managed enterprises, 179; directors 
in, 93; management of, 93; television, 

separatism, 227-28 

Serbia, xxiii, xxiv, xxvii, 16-22, 27, 92; 
agriculture in, 145; Albanians in, 87; 
ancient peoples of, 4; Austrian domi- 
nation of, 19; in Balkan wars, 228; 
birth rates in, 69; Bulgarian occupation 
of, 37; Bulgarian relations with, 22; 
centralization in, 172; coal mining in, 
147; commitment to unity in, 222; 
communist party in, xxviii, 182, 193, 
197, 200, 203; competition of, for 
Dalmatia, 12; Croats in, 78; demo- 
graphic age in, 68; desire for centrali- 
zation, 175-76, 180, 201; division of, 
17; domination of Balkans by, 17; eco- 
nomic activity in, 164; economic and 
political questions in, xl-xli; economic 
reform in, 51, 52; ethnic distribution 
in, 71; German occupation of, 37-38; 
guest workers from, 105, 106; indus- 
try in, 141, 143; intellectual dissent in, 
212, 213; military deployment in, 244; 
mining in, 149; Muslim Slavs in, 83; 
nationalist revival, 76; nuclear power 
station in, 149; opposition to disband- 
ing confederation, xxviii-xxix; opposi- 
tion to economic reform, xxxiii; 
opposition to, xxviii; political conser- 
vatism in, 50, 52; political culture, 223; 
political issues in, 202-4; popularity of 
military in, 253; population distribution 
in, 77; purges in, 54; religion in, 107, 
108; resistance to economic reform, 
167; role in military, 227; topography 
of, 63; Turkish occupation of, 17, 75, 
76; as Turkish principality, 19-20; in 
World War I, 28; in World War II, 40, 
zadruga in, 98 



Serbian Academy of Sciences, 97, 182, 

Serbian-Albanian conflict, xxviii, 32, 205 
Serbian-Croatian conflict, xxix, xxx-xxxi, 
xxxviii, xl, xli; Bosnia and Hercegovi- 
na as point of contention in, xxxvi; 
cease-fires, xxxi, xxxii, xxxix; lack of 
support for, xli; YPA intervention in, 

Serbian-Croatian rivalry, 30, 31, 76, 223; 
attempts to end, 36; in the Federal As- 
sembly, 32, 175; in World War II, 
xxiv, xxv 

Serbian hegemony, xxvi-xxvii, xxviii, 
61-62, 202; attempts to limit, 75; Croa- 
tian reaction to, 75, 76, 80; fears of 
resurgence of, 76; in Kosovo, 203 
Serbian language: literature in, 17, 75 
Serbian-Macedonian conflict, xxviii 
Serbian Orthodox Church, 17, 106, 107, 
108; activities of, 110; autonomy of, 19; 
culture preserved in, 75, 76; Russian 
ties with, 19; schools established by, 86; 
structure of, 110 
Serbian-Slovenian conflict, 203-4, 223 
Serbo-Croatian language, 53, 72, 77; al- 
phabets in, 72; education conducted in, 
1 14, 1 15; use of, in armed forces, 259 
Serbs, 6, 7, 16-22, 53, 74-76; in Bosnia 
and Hercegovina, 74, 76, 210; clash of, 
with Kosovo Albanians, xxvii, 88, 106; 
conversion of, to Christianity, 16; in 
Croatia, 74, 76, 176; cultural influences 
on, 70; culture of, 75; demographic dis- 
tribution of, 74-75; demonstrations 
against Milosevic, xxix-xxx; elimina- 
tion by UstaSe, 38; ethnic outlook of, 
74; families of, 75; hegemony of, in 
Kosovo and Vojvodina, 183, 190; his- 
tory of, 6, 70; Macedonians as, 86; 
massacred by Croats, 75; as members 
of intelligentsia, 95; origins of, 16; as 
percentage of population, 70, 74; rebel- 
lion of, against Turks, 18, 19; slaugh- 
ter of, by Albanians and Hungarians, 
39; stereotype of, 73, in World War I, 

serfdom, abolition in Austrian Empire, 9, 
15, 80 

Seventh-Day Adventist Church, 107, 113 
shipbuilding, 141; exports by shipbuild- 
ing industry, 141 
ships, 151 

Simovic, DuSan, 37, 229 
Singidunum (see also Belgrade), 6 
Sirmium (see also Sremska Mitrovica), 6 
Skopje, 25, 87 

SkupStina. See Federal Assembly 
Slavonia, 6, 12, 13, 15; under Hungary, 

Slavs, 6, 11 

Slovak language, 73; education in, 115 
Slovaks, 30 

Slovenes, 7-10, 80-82; cultural influences 
on, 70; culture of, 81; dominance of, 
by Austria, 9, 81; history of, 6, 7, 70; 
intellectuals, 97; literacy rate, 113-14; 
as minority in Italy, 221; as percentage 
of population, 70; persecution of, 275; 
population, 80; rise of nationalism 
among, 8-9; in YPA, 254, 256; in 
World War I, 28 

Slovenia, xxiii, xxiv, 11, 28, 205; agricul- 
ture in, 144; ancient peoples of, 4; arms 
sales as an ethical issue in, 274; auton- 
omy of, 180; birth rates in, 69; Roman 
Catholic Church in, 82; cease-fire in, 
xxx; commitment to unity in, 222: 
communist party in, 193, 195, 197, 
200, 201; Counterreformation in, 113; 
criticism of YPA in, 253-54; Croats in, 
78; culture of, 61; demographic age in, 
68; demonstrations in, 176, 212; desire 
for decentralization, 1 75; economic ac- 
tivity in, 164; economic and political 
questions in, xl; economic system of, 
82; economy, 200; EEC membership 
for, 165, 216; elections to State 
Presidency, 187; employment, 82; em- 
ployment of women in, 100; ethnic dis- 
tribution in, 71; foreign exchange in, 
162; German annexation of, 37-38, 
124; guest workers from, 105, 106; 
housing in, 103; Hungarian occupation 
of, 37; industry in, 140, 141; infant 
mortality rate in, 68; Italian occupation 
of, 37; liberal politics in, 201; literacy 
rate, 1 15; mining in, 149, 150; mortal- 
ity rate in, 68; multiparty elections in, 
202, 223; noncommunist government 
of, xxvii; nuclear power station in, 149; 
opposition of, to economic reform, 
xxxiii; opposition to Serbian hegemo- 
ny, 202; political culture, 223; politi- 
cal issues in, 200-2; political liberalism 
in, 50, purges in, 54; religion in, 107, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

108; secession of, xxvi, xxx, xxxiv, 
xxxix, 201-2, 222; Socialist Alliance of 
Working People of Slovenia, 198, 214; 
television in, 215; topography of, 63; 
trade unions in, 94; unemployment in, 
94, 138; Western influence on, 200; 
Youth League of Slovenia, 199; youth 
publications in, 101; YPA maneuvers 
in, 257; YPA occupation, xxx 

Slovenian language, 72, 81; development 
of written, 8, 9, 82; education in, 115; 
use of, 10 

Slovenian Social Democratic Alliance, 

Smederjevo, 18 

Social Accounting Service, 137 

social compacts, 132, 134-35; effect of, 
on market system, 133 

social groups (see also under individual 
groups): intelligentsia, 94-97; peasants, 
89-92; workers, 92-94 

Socialist Alliance of Working People of 
Slovenia, 198, 214 

Socialist Alliance of Working People of 
Yugoslavia (SAWPY) {see also People's 
Front), 47, 197-98, 209; conference, 
198; foreign policy input, 216; func- 
tions of, 197-98; membership, 197, 
198; purpose of, 197; in the republics, 
198; structure of, 198 

Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia: 
established, 43 

socialist realism, 48 

socialist self-management, xxiii, 3, 47-49, 
52, 54, 92-93, 123, 127, 131-32, 175, 
181, 199, 222; criticism of, 101; in 
defense production, 270; expanded, 50; 
in Federal Assembly, 177; grass-roots 
political power, 191; of health care, 
117-18; implementation of, 47; insti- 
tutions employing, 132; market econ- 
omy incorporated into, 134; of media, 
214; organization of, 47; organization 
of enterprises under, 131; pluralism in, 
179; purpose of, 131; reorientation of, 
163; of social welfare, 118; system of 
agreements, 130-31, 132, 179; trade 
unions under, 198-99; workers' coun- 
cils, 131 
social self-protection, 282 
Sokolovic, Mehmed Pasha, 18 
Southern Adriatic I oil well, 147 
South Slav Academy of Arts and 

Sciences, 16 
South Slavs (see also under individual ethnic 

groups), xxiii, 228; history of, 69-70 
South Slav union, xxv, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 

21, 27, 69; formation of, 28-29 
Soviet alliance: economic blockade by, 46, 


Soviet Union (see also Russia), 35, 37, 193, 
216; cooperation agreements for 
producing materiel, 272; economic 
sanctions threatened by, xxxiv; exports 
to, 141, 143, 156, 157; imports from, 
156, 157; invasion of Afghanistan, 56, 
218; materiel from, 244, 245, 246-47, 
248, 250, 268; materiel licensing agree- 
ments, 268-69, 271; military assistance 
from, 231; military exchanges, 274, 
275; military training in, 261; natural 
gas supplied by, 147; oil supplied by, 
147, 156, 159; as supplier of agricul- 
tural products, 146; Tito's career in, 
39; trade with, 44, 126, 159; threat -A 
intervention by, 218; withdrawal of ad- 
visers by, 45, 232; in World War II, 
40, 230 

Soviet-Yugoslav military relations, 
231-32, 272-73, 274 

Soviet-Yugoslav relations, 218; rap- 
prochement, 49-50; rift in, 45-47, 52, 
232, 267-68, 280; response of West to 
rift, 46-47 

Spain, 272 

Sporazum, 36 

Sremska Mitrovica, 6 

Stalin, Joseph V., 40, 124, 231; Khru- 
shchev's denouncement of, 49; ob- 
jections of, to Partisans, 45; purge of 
Yugoslav communists by, 173 

Stalingrad, Battle of, 230 

Stalinist economics, 124-25 

Stambolic, Ivan, 203 

Stara GradiSka, 280 

Starfevic, Ante, 16 

State Presidency, xxix, 176, 177, 179, 
187-89, 208, 209, 211; armed forces 
command by, 239, 282; councils in, 
187; criticism of, 213; elections to, 187; 
foreign policy corducted by, 216; 
formed, 187; functions of, 187-2'J; ju- 
dicial appointments, 279; members of, 
187; mukiparty elections for, 223; ro- 
tation in, xxxv, 180, 187; separation 
from party, 192 



State Security Service, 281, 282 

Stefan I Nemanja, 17, 77 

Stefan II Nemanja, 17 

Stepinac, Alojzije, 39, 44-45, 111, 280 

Stojadinovic, Milan, 35; fascist proclivi- 
ties of, 36 

strikes: causes of, 135; opposed by trade 
union officials, 136; as political protest, 
135; to protest economic reform, 182 

Strossmayer, Josip, 16 

students, 101 

Styria, 8 

SubaSic, Ivan, 42, 43 

SUBNOR. See Federation of Associations 

of Veterans of the National Liberation 

War, 199-200, 241 
suicide rate, 116 
Sukarno, 216 

Supreme Committee for Liberation of 
Macedonia, 26 

Supreme Court, federal, 189, 190, 278-79 

Supreme Military Court, 279 

Sweden: arms sales scandal, 254, 274, 
279; cooperation agreements for 
producing materiel, 269, 272; exports 
to, 141; materiel from, 246; relations 
with, 234 

Switzerland: cooperation agreements for 
producing materiel, 269, 272; materiel 
from, 246; relations with, 234 

Syria, 160 

Tanjug, 214 
taxes, xxxiv, 136 

TDF. See Territorial Defense Forces 
teachers, 114; primary school, 114 
telecommunications, 151-52; radio, 

151-52; television, 151-52, 215 
telephones, 91, 152 

Territorial Defense Forces (TDF) (see also 
ar"""d forces; Yugoslav People's 
Army), 227, 235, 250-53, 259; capa- 
bilities of, 236; chain of command, 252; 
coordination with YPA, 236, 237; cost 
of, 252; funding of, 250-52; missions, 
252; organization of, 250-52; purpose 
of, 250; recruitment, 252-53; structure 
of, 238; tension with YPA, 240, 252; 
under TND doctrine, 237; number of 
troops, 250; women in, 258 

Theodosius, 6 

Third World: trade with, 160 
threat perception, 233-34; of Soviet in- 
vasion, 233-34, 244 
Tiberiu.,, 5 

Tito, Josip Broz, 3, 49, 80, 123, 172-73, 
187, 231; career of, 39-40, 172-73, 
173; charisma of, 171, 173; control of 
YPA by, 241; cult of personality, 54; 
elected president for life, 1 78; legacy of, 
172; modernization under, 62; national 
unity under, xxiv, xxv; political system 
restructured by, xxv-xxvi, 171-72; 
purges by, 176-77, 193; reaction to na- 
tionalist movements, 54, 202; relations 
with Soviet Union, 218; role in post- 
war government, 42-43, 44; rule of, 62; 
secret police purged by, 52; support for 
Dubdek, 53; as supreme commander of 
armed forces, 239; withdrawal from de- 
cision making, 178-79 

Tito Mines, 147 

TND. See Total National Defense 

Tomislav, 11 

Topola Foundry, 141 

Total National Defense (TND) doctrine, 
227, 235-36; under Constitution of 
1974, 235; design, 235; implementation 
of, 232-33; origin of, 232-33; provi- 
sions of, 235-36; scenario for, 235; 
TDF under, 237, 250; YPA under, 237 

tourist industry, xxv, 161-62; boom in, 
150; effect of, 162; hard currency from, 
128; number of tourists, 161 

trade unions, 94, 198-99; membership in, 
135, 199; officials, 135; party influence 
in, 198; role of, 198-99 

transportation, 150-51; deficiencies in, 
150; highway construction, 150; inter- 
national traffic, 150; roads, 150 

Travnik, 24 

Trepia Metallurgical Combine, 141, 149 
trials: criminal, 212; political, 212 
Trieste, 29, 46 

Tripartite Pact, 36-37, 40, 229 
Triple Entente, 27-28 
Trubar, Primoz, 8 
trucks, 150 

Truman, Harry S, 232 
Trumbid, Ante, 28 

Tudjman, Franjo, xxvii, xl, xli, 80, 207 
Tunisia, 160 

Tupurkovski, Vasil, xxxvii, 184, 210-1 1 
Turkey, 27; in Balkan Entente, 34, 216, 


Yugoslavia: A Country Study 

229; emigration of Muslim Slavs to, 83; 
in World War I, 27 
Turkish language, 73; education in, 115 
Turks, 30; conquest of Balkans by, 8, 13; 
occupation of Bosnia by, 23-24; occu- 
pation of Hercegovina by, 23-24; con- 
quest of Hungary by, 8; occupation of 
Macedonia by, 25; withdrawal from oc- 
cupied lands, 13 
Tvrtko, Stefan I, 23 

Ukrainian language: education in, 115 

Uljanik Shipyard, 141 

unemployment, xxxiv, 123, 138-39, 163, 
164; decrease in, 52; demographic 
characteristics of, 138; effect of oil price 
increase on, 139; guest-worker employ- 
ment as remedy for, 51-52, 130, 161; 
increase in, 94, 180; and inflation, 139; 
length of, 138; number of people 
registered, 138; programs for stem- 
ming, 139; rate of, 94; regional differ- 
ences, 138-39; of returning guest 
workers, 106, 138, 164; statistics, 138; 
of youth, 199 

Uniate Church, 30 

United Nations, 46; peacekeeping force 
in Serbian-Croatian conflict, xxxviii- 
xxxix, xl 

United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation 
Administration, 124 

United States, 47, 216; cooperation agree- 
ments for producing materiel, 272; con- 
demnation by, of human rights policies, 
219; credits and loans from, 126, 218, 
232; economic sanctions threatened by, 
xxxiv; exports to, 143, 156; imports 
from, 156; materiel from, 244, 248, 
250, 267, 269, 274-75; military as- 
sistance from, 231, 232, 268; military 
ties to, 273; military training in, 268, 
274-75; relations with, 218-19; secu- 
rity relations with, 218-19; as supplier 
of agricultural products, 146; as sup- 
plier of nuclear fuel, 149 

United States Arms Control and Disar- 
mament Agency, 269 

United States Military Assistance Advi- 
sory Group (MAAG), 232, 268 

urban problems, 104 

UstaSe, 34, 80, 231; assassination of Alek- 
sandar by, 35; Roman Catholic Church 

involvement with, 39; Croats in, 80; 
defeat of, 42; ethnic destruction by, 
38-39; organization of, 230; punish- 
ment of, 44, 280; teachers in, 1 14; 
Serbs under, 80 
Uzice Republic, 40 

Vardar River, 4, 64, 150 

Vatican: relations with, 45, 111 

Venetian Republic, 14 

Venice, 1 1 ; attempt to dominate Dalma- 
tia, 11-12 

veterans' association, 199-200 

Vidovdan, 17, 27 

Vienna, 8 

Vlach, 73 

Vlasi, Azem, 205 

Vlastimir, 16 

Vodnik, Valentin, 9 

Vojvodina, xxiv, 12, 16-22, 43; autono- 
my for, 177-78, 182, 190; birth rates 
in, 69; Croats in, 78; communist party 
in, 197, 200; demographic age in, 68; 
ethnic distribution in, 71 ; German oc- 
cupation of, 37; guest workers from, 
105, 106; Hungarian occupation of, 37; 
Hungarians in, 206; infant mortality 
rate in, 68; military deployment in, 
244; in Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, 
and Slovenes, 29; political issues in, 
206; political status of, 206; population 
distribution in, 77; population growth 
rate in, 68; pro-Serbian demonstrations 
in, 206; purges in, 54; religion in, 113; 
Serbian hegemony in, 183, 203; Ser- 
bianization campaign in, 202; Serbs in, 
74; topography of, 64 
VukaSin, 25 

wages, 164, 165 

Warsaw Pact, 233, 244, 274; invasion of 
Czechoslovakia by, 52, 218, 232, 233, 
236; possibility of war with NATO, 235 

wartime collaborators: execution of sus- 
pected, 44, 62 

welfare system, 118 

West Germany. See Federal Republic of 

White Croatia, 1 1 
White Serbia, 16 

women, 100-101; in Albanian culture, 



88; education of, 83, 113; employed 
outside the home, xxiii, 100; fields of 
employment, 100-101; as guest work- 
ers, 106; maternity leave for, 118; 
peasants, 90; rights of, 100, 101; in 
TDF, 258 

women's groups, 101 

women's movement, 101 

work communities, 132 

workers, 92-94; in defense production, 
270; effect of economic restructuring 
on, 93; employed in private enterprise, 
94; former peasants as, 92; growth in 
numbers of, 92; moonlighting, 94; as 
party members, 94, 95-96; redundan- 
cy of, 139; stratification among, 93; un- 
employment among, 94; wage austerity 
programs, 163, 182 

workers' councils, 190-91; powers of, 
131; structure of, 131-32; role of trade 
unions in, 199 

World Bank, 176 

World War I, 26-28, 229; casualties in, 
28, 231 ; desire for South Slav kingdom 
during, 3; legacy of, 3, 32; outbreak of, 

World War II (see also National Liberation 
War of 1941-45), 37-42, 80, 229-31; 
casualties in, 42, 62, 124; destruction in, 
42; legacy of, 3; outbreak of, 36-37; par- 
tition and terror in, 37-39; persecution 
of Eastern Orthodox priests in, 108- 10; 
reconstruction after, 124; resistance 
movement in, 39-42; surrender to Ger- 
many in, 229 

Writers' Association of Serbia, 203, 212, 

Writers' Association of Yugoslavia, 212 

YBA. See Yugoslav Banking Association 
YBIEC. See Yugoslav Bank for Interna- 
tional Economic Cooperation 
Young Turks, 26 

youth, 101; publications, 101, 214; un- 
employment among, 199 
Youth League of Montenegro, 208 
Youth League of Slovenia, 199 
Youth League of Yugoslavia, 198, 199 
YPA. See Yugoslav People's Army 
Yugoslav Air Transport (J AT), 151 
Yugoslav Bank for International Econom- 
ic Cooperation (YBIEC), 137, 138 

Yugoslav Banking Association (YBA), 

Yugoslav Committee, 28 

Yugoslav People's Army (YPA) (see also 
armed forces; Territorial Defense 
Forces), 227, 243-46; air defense, 
245-46; air force transport support, 
247; antiaircraft artillery, 246; antitank 
regiments, 245; areas deployed, 243; 
artillery, 244; attacks on, 254; 
branches, 243; brigade-level organiza- 
tion, 243-44; capabilities of, 236; chain 
of command, 252; civilian security ser- 
vice under, 281; combat vehicles, 244; 
conscripts in, 256; control of, xxxix; 
coordination of, with TDF, 236, 237; 
criticism of, 253-54; Croats purged 
from, 256; deficiencies in, 246; 
demobilization of, 231; depoliticization 
of, xxxii; ethnic tensions in, xxxi, 228, 
254-56; General Staff, 240, 252; infan- 
try, 244; insignia, 263; internal secu- 
rity mission of, xxvii, xxx, xxxi, 
283-84; maneuvers by, in Slovenia, 
257; materiel, 244, 270-7 1 ; missile sys- 
tems, 244-45; naval support for, 250; 
number of troops, 227, 232, 243, 258; 
organization of, 227, 342; party in- 
fluence in, 241; popularity in Serbia, 
253; problems in, xxxii; proportion of 
ethnic groups in, 254; proportion of 
Serbs in, 254-56; ranks, 262; reorgani- 
zation of, 243; reserves, 258-59; 
reserve training, 261; reservists, 243; 
retirement, 258; role of, xxxi; structure 
of, 238; support for Serbs, xxxi; tanks, 
244; tension with TDF, 240, 252; Ti- 
to's control of, 241 ; under TND doc- 
trine, 237; uniforms, 263-65 

Yugoslav Radio and Television Network, 

Zadar, 12, 29 

zadruga (see also extended family): advan- 
tages of, 98; decline of, 98-99; and 
kumstvo, 99-100; patriarchal authority 
in, 98; religion in, 98 

Zagreb, University of, 16 

Zagreb-Split rail line, 150 

Zeta, 16, 17 

Zivkovic, Petar, 33, 34 

zupan, 16, 17 

Zvonimir, Dmitrije, 1 1 


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